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Remarks by H.E. Ambassador Wang Guangya at the High-level Meeting on Afghanistan
23 September 007



Your Excellency President Hamid Karzai,
our Excellency Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon,
Dear Colleagues,

The Chinese Government wishes to thank the United Nations and the Afghan Government for jointly hosting this high-level meeting on Afghanistan. Our thanks also go to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and President Karzai for their remarks. This meeting demonstrates the resolve of the international community in continuing its support for the Government and people of Afghanistan. It is our firm belief that Afghanistan may forge ahead in pain, but never in loneliness.

We are pleased to note that, thanks to the help of the United Nations and the international community, Afghanistan is moving forward in national reconstruction and development. But on the other hand, Afghanistan is still faced with many austere challenges. I wish to underscore the following four points on how to address these challenges:

1. Security and stability are top priorities for Afghanistan and should be ensured with great efforts. We hope the international community will invest more resources to help Afghanistan speed up development of its own armed and police forces, and enable them to shoulder the responsibility of independently safeguarding national security and social stability at an early date.

2. The key to lasting peace and stability in Afghanistan lies in speeding up economic development and social reconstruction and improving people's living standards. The international community should redouble its efforts to help the Afghan Government implement the Afghanistan Compact and the Afghanistan National Development Strategy and make progress in economic development, infrastructure, education, health, human rights, the rule of law and other fields. It is necessary to ensure that the dividends of development are shared by the entire Afghan people.

3. An integrated approach should be adopted to combat opium planting and drug trafficking. The drug issue not only bears on the economy, livelihood, security and stability of Afghanistan, but also concerns the governing capability of its government as well as customs and faiths of its people. We hope the Afghan Government will make in-depth research into the problem, coordinate and cooperate with its neighbors and the international community, and intensify its anti-drug efforts through integrated measures.

4. The international community should honor its commitments and continue to support the Afghan Government and people. The Government of China supports the United Nations and the UNAMA in playing a core leadership role in the peaceful reconstruction of Afghanistan, and calls on the international community to continue its all-dimensional assistance to Afghanistan while respecting the will of the Afghan Government and people.

As a friendly neighbor, China feels deeply the sufferings of Afghanistan and sincerely hopes that the country will achieve national prosperity and social harmony and deliver happy life to its people at an early date. To this end, China has played an active part in Afghanistan's post-war reconstruction. Chinese President Hu Jintao recently announced that the Chinese Government would provide an additional grant of 80 million RMB yuan to Afghanistan this year.

In conclusion, the Chinese Government agrees to and supports the communiqué of this meeting and believes that its release will help promote the concerted efforts made by the international community in Afghanistan.

Thank you all.


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