Progress in Afghanistan requires long-term commitment: UN envoy

08:53, July 01, 2010      

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Afghanistan's UN Ambassador Zahir Tanin on Wednesday urged international partners to renew long-term commitment to the Central Asian country in order for it to achieve sustainable progress.

Speaking to an open debate of the UN Security Council, Tanin said that Afghanistan has made "visible progress" in the past months.

The Afghan National Army and Police, now operating with increased operational capability, are on schedule to reach their combined target size and strength, he said. "In partnership with the international forces, we have begun to take back the initiative from the Taliban in some key parts of the country."

In addition, the government is increasingly focused on efficiency and effectiveness, cracking down on corruption and promoting rule of law, he noted.

"Afghans have great hopes, and great expectations, from our international friends and allies," Tanin said. "They are well aware that Afghanistan would still be under the bloody reign of the Taliban and Al Qaeda without the support and assistance of the international community."

"But they are nevertheless disturbed by the ongoing debates among and between our international allies, and concerned that sustainable progress may be difficult to achieve if we do not show patience, fortitude and long-term commitment."

He urged the international community to work towards building the confidence and trust of the Afghan people, saying that the upcoming International Kabul Conference on Afghanistan and the following parliamentary elections could catalyze the process.

In his latest report to the Security Council, UN Secretary- General Ban Ki-moon said that the overall security situation has not improved over the past few months, with continuing attacks against the government, international forces and civilians.

During the period, roadside bombings and suicide attacks have persisted with intensified military operations, according to the report.

Source: Xinhua


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