British envoy wishes Afghans a happy Nawroz
“I am delighted to wish all the people of Afghanistan a happy Nawroz. Nawroz is a time of new beginnings, to look forward to the New Year with optimism. It’s also an occasion to reflect on the last 12 months as we prepare ourselves for the year ahead,” Jermey said in a statement issued by the British Embassy in Kabul.
The envoy said it had been 20 years since he first came to Kabul. “This is a very different country from the Afghanistan I first knew, with progress in so many different areas.”
Jermey said Afghanistan today was a democracy with a free press and a strong civil society, in which girls could go to school and its sports stars could compete in World Cups. “I know that Afghans will continue to build on these and other gains.”
The ambassador said he was also conscious that Afghanistan still faced many challenges. “2015 was a difficult year for this country, in which the resilience of the Afghan people was once again tested.”
He said the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces had continued to show remarkable courage in protecting their people from insurgent attacks.
“I believe the Afghan people have suffered for far too long from violence. The recent quadrilateral meetings have created a platform for talks to put an end to this. It’s time for the Taliban to put down their weapons and come into a peace process.”
Jermey said Afghanistan has huge potential, a national unity government that was committed to achieving peace, reform and self-reliance and has the full support of the international community. “But this potential can only be fully realised if there is long-term stability.”
He called as important milestones the NATO Warsaw Summit in July and the Brussels Development Conference in October in the coming year.
“The United Kingdom, and I am certain the international community, will reaffirm its commitment to Afghanistan and I know the government of Afghanistan will demonstrate the progress made in delivering the reforms essential to improve the lives of the Afghan people.”
He said he was proud of the UK’s partnership with Afghanistan. “I’m also proud that the UK will continue to support the government of Afghanistan in building a more peaceful, secure and prosperous future for the people of this beautiful country.”
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