Security Council extends UNAMA mandate
KABUL (PAN): The Security Council on Tuesday unanimously adopted a resolution extending the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) until March 19, 2014, with Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urging continued support to the government in Kabul.
The 15-member council called on the world body to support the Afghan government’s National Priority Programmes as the process of security, governance and development transition continues in the country.
The council underlined a continued presence of UNAMA and other UN agencies, funds and programmes in the provinces, consistent with the transition process, in support of and in cooperation with the Afghan government.
Ban said in his opening remarks the UN must continue supporting the Afghan government beyond the 2014 deadline for the government’s assumption of responsibility. “Let us work as hard as possible to ensure that this transition leads to the stable, prosperous and safe future that the country’s people deserve.”
In a statement on the UN website, he said: “We should continue providing good offices, including support for the elections. We should maintain our work for reconciliation and regional cooperation. We must stand firm for human rights. And we must advance development.”
Afghanistan’s political climate was dominated by the 2014 presidential elections, he said, while updating the council on the situation in the country. Broad participation in the polls and a credible process were vital to achieving the goal of a widely accepted leadership transition, he remarked.
He voiced his concern at a 20 per cent increase in civilian casualties among women and girls in 2012, noting two statements from the Taliban indicating a willingness to engage. He encouraged a meaningful dialogue to reduce the intolerable, continuing death toll.
Earlier, UNAMA head Jan Kubiš, affirmed the transition to full Afghan responsibility was progressing. “Almost everything is in motion and changing.”
He recognised UNAMA’s mandate was not a transition mandate, which would only be discussed and delivered next year. General planning and budgeting for the next biennium and agreements between the government and the UN system needed to be put in place, he said.
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