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Reforms hold key to Afghanistan’s success: NATO chief

Reforms hold key to Afghanistan’s success: NATO chief

Mar 15, 2016 - 14:54

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The NATOinfo-icon chief, currently on a visit to the war-devastated country, on Tuesday said Afghanistaninfo-icon’s long-term success required sweeping reforms.

The issue figured at his discussions with President Ashraf Ghani, Jens Stoltenberg told a news conference in Kabul after talks with the Afghan leader.

“It (reform) means stepping up Afghanistan’s investment in the security forces. And it also means ensuring that human rights, including for womeninfo-icon and children, are fully respected,” he said.

Flanked by President Ghani, he supported ongoing efforts to revive the intra-Afghan peace negotiations. “The peace process is another key element in stabilizing the country over the longer haul. I welcome recent signs of progress.”

Earlier in the day, Stoltenberg landed in Kabul together with NATO Military Committee Chairman Gen. Petr Pavel.

“Together, we assessed the security situation, reviewed the government’s reform efforts and discussed NATO’s continuing support to Afghanistan,” the secretary general said of his meeting with Ghani.

He acknowledged 2015 was a tough year for Afghan forces, who continued to show resilience in protecting the people after taking full charge of security across the country.

Stoltenberg added: “At a great cost, we have made great progress together in the fight against terrorism. We owe our deep gratitude to the brave men and women of our armed forces.”

The alliance, training, advising and assisting the Afghan forces as part of the Resolute Support mission, would continue to provide them financial support, the secretary-general promised.

Stoltenberg is due to meet senior international community leaders and members of Afghan civil societyinfo-icon. He will address Afghan National Defence and Security Forces and Resolute Support officials.

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