Good neighborly ties possible if safe havens dismantled: UNSC told
WASHINGTON (Pajhwok): Referring to recent terrorist attacks in southern Kandahar and Helmand provinces, Afghanistan on Monday told the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) that better relationship with neighboring countries “is possible only if terrorist safe havens are dismantled.”
Afghan Ambassador to the UN, Mahmoud Saikal, told members of the UNSC during a discussion on the current situation in Afghanistan that the attacks in Kandahar and Helmand provinces showed better relations with neighbors could only be possible when foreign based sanctuaries were dismantled and violence reduced inside Afghanistan and across the region.
Saikal said friendly, mutually respectful relations between Afghanistan and Pakistan were necessary to create an enabling environment for the peace process and to ensure the security, stability, prosperity, and national interests of both states.
“We once again heard and welcomed the leadership of Pakistan's statements, that Pakistan will play a genuine and constructive role in support of security, and facilitating peace talks with the Taliban,” the diplomat said, referring to the meeting between President Ashraf Ghani and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on the sidelines of the Heart of Asia conference in Islamabad.
Noting that talking to the Taliban is not new, Saikal said Afghanistan has been talking to them since they appeared in the political landscape of the country in 1994. “We have experienced the seasonality and tactical use of war and peace,” he said.
“The latest potential diplomatic breakthrough in putting the peace process back on track and opening an effective and sustainable regional and global approach is a sign of hope, but can only become meaningful if words are translated to deeds.”
“This is the moment of truth; we must see a genuine paradigm shift in the part of regional orchestrators of our insecurity,” the Afghan diplomat said.
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