Smooth political transition a priority: UN
BRUSSELS (PAN): Hinting at long-term partnership with Afghanistan, the UN’s top diplomat in the country has identified assistance in areas of elections, reconciliation and regional cooperation as top priorities.
Addressing a meeting of NATO foreign ministers here on Tuesday, the UN secretary-general’s special representative also stressed the need for fostering greater respect for human rights, including women and children’s rights and building local institutional capacity.
The UN continued to reinforce a culture of peace and foster the conditions conducive for sustainable and inclusive reconciliation efforts, Jan Kubis said, calling the civil society-led Afghan People’s Dialogue on Peace one such initiative supported by UNAMA.
“We at UNAMA, and the wider UN family, are focused on the political and economic transitions. These are distinct roles but the processes are all deeply intertwined and vital to Afghanistan’s future,” he added.
This summer Afghan forces would assume full securing lead across the country and their ability to protect the population would be crucial for convincing the people of their safe future in a stable Afghanistan, essential for the success of the ongoing political and economic transition.
With a second round of consultations launched to explore the drivers of local conflict, he said the first phase had revealed that corruption, lack of justice and abuse of authority were seen as the country’s biggest problem.
“This underlines the vital need for human security through the rule of law, good governance and service delivery at the sub-national level to break the cycles of conflict and undermine the powerbrokers that benefit from and sustain the violence,” the UNAMA chief observed.
While characterising a smooth democratic leadership transition, with elections results accepted by most Afghans as the top political priority, he said the polls must be Afghan-led and Afghan-managed.
Both holding of the elections and holding them better than the previous ones was crucial for sustaining the commitment of the international partners to continue their truly extraordinary engagement with and support for Afghanistan after 2014, he stressed.
The diplomat urged the Afghan government ought to intensify its work with donors to agree without further delay on electoral funding modalities that were realistic, sustainable and satisfactory for all.
The United Nations had already begun reflecting on its future orientation to best support Afghans in meeting the challenges and opportunities through transition and into the transformation decade, he continued.
Kubis said: “Our role will necessarily change post-2014 in recognition of sovereignty and national ownership. This will necessarily be shaped by the prevailing condition in the country and the agreed modalities of cooperation by donor nations and member states.”
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