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Ghani admin committed to lasting peace: Barmak

Ghani admin committed to lasting peace: Barmak

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Jun 30, 2018 - 10:13

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): President Ashraf Ghani’s unconditional ceasefire with the Talibaninfo-icon reaffirmed his administration’s commitment to lasting peace in the country, says the interior minister.

“We await the Taliban’s long-term commitment to this historic offer, which can pave the way for peace and reconciliation,” Wais Barmak told an UN-sponsored international conference in New York.

The conference involving heads of counter-terrorism agencies would lead to enhanced international cooperation against terrorism, he hoped, supporting the UN’s role in promoting peace and stability.

“We have always supported the idea of having a more central UN structure to better coordinate and respond to the evolving terrorist threat and assistance needs of states,” the minister claimed.

Barmak also referred to the formation of the Office of Counter-Terrorism (OCT) last year. Reposing confidence in the leadership and vision of USG Vladimir Voronkov, he hoped the new office would lead to progress in combating the scourge.

“From our perspective, the following points are essential in regards to the work of the OCT:

“First, we believe the office should maintain adequate and sustained collaboration with member-states, particularly those facing terrorism and standing in the first line of defense against this menace. Afghanistaninfo-icon places high value in the work of the OCT and our relationship with it.  As always, country visits by relevant UN bodies have special value in strengthening relationships, identifying gaps and necessary areas of collaboration on various CT aspects. 

“Second, and on a related note, support and assistance by the OCT should be guided by specific contexts and needs, requested by respective States.

“Third, we believe that the new office can only benefit from the expertise and know-how of countries that have experience in countering terrorism, in all its aspects. This can go a long way in benefiting the technical and operational outputs of the Office.

“Fourth, it is most evident that adequate, comprehensive and efficient coordination of UN agencies are at the heart of a successful UN counter-terrorism response. As the primary UN body mandated to deal with this issue, we expect the OCT to improve advocacy, visibility, and resource mobilization for counter-terrorism and preventing violent extremism within that framework.

“These will be essential for the overall implementation and follow up on various international protocols, conventions, and tools on counter-terrorism.

“Fifth, and certainly not least, we believe it should enhance focus in ensuring the rights of victims of terrorism, including their families, with adequate financial and psychological support. Afghanistan had the honor of facilitating the adoption of GA resolution entitled “International Day of Remembrance and Tribute to the Victims of Terrorism,” and we hope it will be a basis for greater attention to this important issue.

Barmak said the Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate (CTED) was established to monitor and facilitate adequate implementation of one of the most important UN resolutions dealing with terrorism.

Yet, he added, the evolving scope of terrorism has shown UNSC and General Assembly resolutions are not adequately implemented.

CTED’s first-ever visit to Afghanistan in January last year helped identify new areas of cooperation, the minister said. The follow-up meeting, together with donors and UN agencies, discussed the provision of technical assistance.

Since 2001, the global community has been supporting Afghanistan in terms of funding and training in its fight against international terrorism, the minister acknowledged.

“Our forces have also inflicted heavy losses on, and degraded and eliminated a significant part of Daesh, Al-Qaeda and other foreign terrorist groups… In doing so, we will continue to not only defend and protect our people, but the worldinfo-icon at large.

“President Ghani’s unconditional cease-fire to the Taliban reaffirmed our commitment to lasting peace. We await the Taliban’s long-term commitment to this historic offer, which can pave the way for peace and reconciliation.”

pr/mud

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