|Statement by Ambassador Wang Min at the Security Council Open Debate on the Situation in Afghanistan|
I wish to thank Special Representative of the Secretary-General Ján Kubiš for his briefing. I also welcome Ambassador Tanin of Afghanistan and thank him for his statement.
China has always and unequivocally supported peace and reconstruction in Afghanistan, as well as the early achievement of the goal of Afghanistan being governed by its own people. Efforts to promote national reconciliation should continue to abide by the principle of Afghan leadership and ownership, and strike an appropriate balance in such areas as the political process, economic development, security, stability and national reconciliation. China appreciates the achievements of the Afghan Government and people in various nation-building endeavours. Recent international conferences on this question have reaffirmed the international community's commitment to Afghanistan. In that regard, I wish to emphasize the following four points.
First, the 2014 elections will be a critical element of the political process. Afghanistan is actively preparing for the elections. China welcomes the fact that the Afghan Government has already defined an electoral time frame. The international community should respect Afghan sovereignty and political independence in the elections. The United Nations has rich electoral experience, and China welcomes the electoral assistance of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), at the request of the Afghan Government.
Secondly, efforts to achieve lasting security and stability in Afghanistan still face challenges. The security situation in some provinces is not stable, and there has been an increase in civilian casualties. China welcomes Afghanistan's efforts to build the capacities of its security forces and to gradually assume responsibility for maintaining State stability and security. In the prevailing circumstances, the handover of security responsibilities should be progressive and orderly so as to maintain overall stability.
Thirdly, national reconciliation is an important component of peace and reconstruction processes in Afghanistan. China supports the ongoing implementation of the Kabul communiqué and the promotion of an Afghan-led reconciliation process. Mr. Rabbani, Chair of the High Peace Council, recently visited Pakistan. The two sides achieved an important consensus, which China welcomes. The Security Council recently adopted resolution 2082 (2012), adjusting relevent sanctions measures. We hope that this step will contribute to the promotion of reconciliation.
Fourthly, it is only by ensuring the prosperity and development of Afghanistan that the foundation for lasting security and stability can be laid. China supports the efforts of the Afghan Government to build the economy, increase employment and improve living standards. We hope that the international community will honour its aid commitments to Afghanistan and support the development priorities independently identified by the Government. It is critical to alleviate food shortages in some parts of the country.
The promotion of peace and reconstruction in Afghanistan requires the joint efforts of that country and the international community. China supports the United Nations lead role in coordinating international efforts to address that matter. We hope that UNAMA will continue to strengthen its coordination and cooperation with the Afghan Government. China supports the positive role played by the countries of the region and regional organizations in Afghanistan's peace and reconstruction processes. Regional cooperative initiatives should respect Afghan sovereignty, prioritize the legitimate concerns of the countries of the region, and advance steadily through full consultations.
Thank you, Mr. President.