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Tokyo meeting to identify Afghan uplift priorities

Tokyo meeting to identify Afghan uplift priorities

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Jan 11, 2012 - 19:53

KABULinfo-icon (PANinfo-icon): Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul on Wednesday said participants of the upcoming international conference on Afghanistaninfo-icon in Tokyo were expected to pledge assistance for fundamental projects and identify development priorities.

Addressing a joint news conference with his Japanese counterpart, Koichiro Gemba, Rassoul said they had discussed issues concerning bilateral relations, security transition and the conference in Tokyo.

The conference, a follow-up to an international meeting in Bonn, is scheduled to take place in the Japanese capital in July this year. Rassoul said participating countries would pledge their assistances toward Afghanistan's development priorities until 2024.

He did not go into details, but hoped the conference would give practical shape to the international community's promises held out at the second Bonn conference on December 5.

Gemba, who arrived on a surprise visit to Kabul, attended the conference but did not speak. Foreign ministry officials said the Japanese minister had a tight schedule and planned to return home.

Rassoul said Japan had pledged continued support to Afghanistan to address the country's economic problems.

Over the past decade, Japan has provided Afghanistan more than $3 billion of the $7 billion aid pledges.

ma/mud

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