|Statement by Ambassador Ma Zhaoxu at the Security Council Debate on Afghanistan|
I would like to thank Special Representative Yamamoto, Executive Director Fedotov and Under Secretary-General Voronkov for their briefings. China listened attentively to the statement made by the representative of Afghanistan.
Peace and stability in Afghanistan have a direct bearing on the well-being of the Afghan people, as well as on security, stability and prosperity in the region. The parliament and district council elections will be held during the year, and preparations are under way. The recent terrorist attacks caused a large number of civilian casualties, and the political and security situation in Afghanistan remains severe. China welcomes President Ghani's recent declaration of a temporary unilateral ceasefire with the Taliban and appreciates the Afghan government's efforts to maintain national stability, promote national reconciliation and economic development. The international community should continue to provide strong support for Afghanistan.
Peace and stability are the foundation for Afghanistan's national reconstruction and economic development. The international community should continue to support the capacity building of the Afghan National Security Forces, strengthen Afghanistan's self-defense capabilities, and work together to effectively address threats such as terrorism, transnational crime, and drug trafficking, and help Afghanistan meet these challenges through regional efforts. The international community should strengthen coordination and cooperation in combating regional terrorism forces.
Strengthening governance is an important guarantee for promoting peace and reconstruction in Afghanistan. Ultimately, Afghan affairs should be determined by the Afghan people. All political parties in Afghanistan should strengthen unity and resolve differences through dialogue and consultation. The international community must earnestly respect the Afghan people's right to independently choose the political system and the path to development. In accordance with Afghanistan's national development strategy and specific needs, it should help the Afghan government to improve its governance capacity in a targeted manner.
Advancing national reconciliation is the fundamental way to resolve the question of Afghanistan. China strongly supports an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace and reconciliation process, including the role that the Kabul Process continues to play. We support the Afghan Government in reaching agreement on national reconciliation with armed opposition groups, including the Taliban, and launching the peace process. The Taliban should actively respond to the peace initiative of the Afghan Government and be committed to lasting peace and stability in the country.
As a traditionally friendly neighbor of Afghanistan, China supports the country in achieving peace, security, stability and development at an early date. Following the 1st China-Afghanistan-Pakistan Foreign Ministers' Dialogue hosted by China last December, China hosted in May a deputy foreign minister level strategic dialogue between China, Afghanistan and Pakistan, a deputy foreign minister level counter-terrorism security consultation between these three countries, and a deputy foreign minister level meeting of the "Shanghai Cooperation Organization - Afghanistan Contact Group" in Beijing. President Ghani attended the 18th meeting of the Council of Heads of SCO Member States in Qingdao, China, in early June as the head of an observer nation. These activities have achieved positive results in promoting the political settlement of the Afghanistan issue, strengthening regional cooperation, and advancing counter-terrorism work. China is willing to continue to use the above-mentioned mechanisms to strengthen cooperation with Afghanistan and other countries in the region to jointly address the threat of terrorism and promote regional peace, stability, and development.
Afghanistan is an important country on the route of the "Belt and Road Initiative". Security Council resolutions have pointed out time and again that all parties should take advantage of the "Belt and Road Initiative" to promote economic development in Afghanistan and regional cooperation, help Afghanistan achieve stability and prosperity, and make concerted efforts to create a community with shared future for mankind through dialogue and coordination. In accordance with the provisions set out in the relevant Council resolutions, China will continue to work with all parties to help Afghanistan leverage its comparative advantages, participate in regional economic cooperation and connectivity and achieve economic and social development.
China commends the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) on its work and supports its positive role in helping Afghanistan to promote the political process, safeguard national security, foster economic development, and enhance its governance capacity. China will continue to support UNAMA and Special Representative Yamamoto in their efforts.
Thank you, Mr. President.