STATE SECRETARY – MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS KANAT SAUDABAYEV
URGES EXPANDING ENGAGEMENT BETWEEN OSCE AND AFGHANISTAN
Astana, July 20: At the International Conference on Afghanistan, held on July
20 in Kabul, Kazakhstan put forward the strategy prioritizing the
rehabilitation and post-conflict restoration of Afghanistan with strengthening
the humanitarian component in the assistance from the international community.
The visit and participation of the OSCE Chairman-in-Office, Secretary of
State-Minister of Foreign Affairs Kanat Saudabayev of Kazakhstan are viewed as
an important step towards development of the Kazakh-Afghan cooperation and
promotion of priorities of Kazakhstan’s OSCE Chairmanship.
President of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai opened the conference
with a welcome address followed by the speeches of UN Secretary General Ban
Ki-moon, Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmay Rasul, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary
Clinton and UN Special Representative for Afghanistan Staffan De Mistura.
Commending the Afghan government’s work for the conference
organization, Minister Saudabayev expressed a strong determination in the need
of the international community’s supporting the implementation of the
Afghanistan National Development Strategy in order to build a stable,
democratic, and prosperous Afghan state.
“We are convinced of the need to strengthen the cooperation
of multilateral structures in the settlement of the Afghan issue with the
leading role of the United Nations and taking into account the position of the
Afghan Government,” he said.
Speaking of the enhancing of the security in the country
Saudabayev reminded of the concrete proposals on the training of Afghan border
officials and police personnel at training centers in Kazakhstan.
As for the combating drug trafficking and related threats,
Saudabayev stressed: “Kazakhstan considers it necessary to make use to the
maximum extent possible of the opportunities provided by the UN Central Asian
Regional Information and Coordination Centre (CARICC) for combating illicit
trafficking of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors and
to share information between the OSCE Action against Terrorism Unit and the
Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization”.
Calling upon the OSCE countries to actively involve in
resolving the Afghan issue, Saudabayev emphasized the importance of changing
the very paradigm of combating challenges, emanating from Afghanistan, from
military means to eradication of sources of these challenges.
Kazakhstan actively promotes the Afghan agenda during
ongoing events held under the auspices of Kazakhstan’s Chairmanship in the
OSCE. On July 8 and 9 this year, an International Conference on Combating the
Threat of Illicit Drugs and Strengthening Control of Precursor Chemicals took
place under our auspices in Vienna. The Afghan issue will also be taken up at
the planned OSCE Conference on combating terrorism on 20 and 21 October this
year in Astana.
“Helping the Afghans move from the military conflict to a
constructive track is a main objective of both the OSCE and international
coalition,” Saudabayev stressed. “On behalf of the OSCE, I would like to
express our readiness to assist in the electoral reform and our hope that the
upcoming parliamentary election of September 18 will contribute to the
establishment of the full-fledged legislative and executive branches of the
government and, ultimately, to building a stable and democratic state in
Realizing the Afghan problems could not be solved only
militarily, Kazakhstan on the bilateral basis takes active part in the
processes of rehabilitating Afghanistan.
Over recent years, Kazakhstan has allocated some US$ 4
million to rebuilding schools, hospitals and roads in Afghanistan. Astana has
also delivered to Afghanistan about three thousand tons of wheat, transferred
US$ 1 million to the Special Fund for Islamic solidarity of the Organization of
Islamic Conference (OIC), the part of which will be directed to Afghanistan’s
The year of 2010 will see the start of the Kazakh-Afghan
intergovernmental agreement on providing vocational training for one thousand
Afghans at the Kazakh universities, and for this purpose Astana has allocated
US$ 50 million.
As part of his visit to Kabul, Saudabayev held talks with
President Hamid Karzai on the issues of cooperation in the multilateral and
President Karzai commended the results of a recent informal
of OSCE foreign ministers in Almaty, including the consensus
on holding the OSCE summit in Kazakhstan this year.
Afghanistan firmly supports Kazakhstan’s efforts as OSCE
Chairman and the initiative of President Nursultan Nazarbayev to hold the OSCE
Summit, one of the key themes of which may be increasing the assistance to
Afghanistan by the OSCE countries, Karzai stressed.
During the meeting with the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon
the sides noted the importance of proper celebration of August 29 as the
UN-recognized International Day Against Nuclear Tests. Ban Ki-moon and
Saudabayev agreed to continue regular consultations on the situation in Central
Asia and other important international issues.
Saudabayev also held talks with US Secretary of State
Hillary Clinton, where they discussed bilateral issues and the cooperation
within the OSCE.
Secretary Clinton thanked Kazakhstan for the recent
ratification of an agreement for land transit of special cargoes through
Kazakhstan onto Afghanistan, which is an important element in the overall
efforts to bring stability to Afghanistan.
She said she was pleased with a consensus reached at the
recent OSCE informal ministerial in Astana regarding holding the OSCE summit
this year, and said the United States is looking forward to finalizing the
exact dates for such a meeting later this year. Secretary Clinton also
expressed satisfaction with the understanding reached by the OSCE foreign
ministers that the OSCE is to send a Police Advisory Group to Kyrgyzstan
shortly. She thanked Kazakhstan for President Nursultan Nazarbayev’s
‘essential’ leadership in helping resolve the crisis in Kyrgyzstan.
The OSCE Permanent Council in Vienna is to make a formal
decision on both the deployment of the Police Advisory Group and the dates of
the summit later this year.
While in Kabul, Saudabayev also conferred with a number of
colleagues including Zalmai Rasoul of Afghanistan, Sergei Lavrov of Russia,
Guido Westerwelle of Germany, Ahmet Davutoglu of Turkey, Audronius Azubalis of
Lithuania, Hamrokhon Zarifi of Tajikiistan, as well as EU High Representative for
foreign policy Baroness Catherine Ashton.
The International Conference on Afghanistan in Kabul was
designed as an event summing up the results of intensive work and thorough
discussion of the policy priorities of the Afghan Government, which are
implemented through national programs aimed at promoting economic growth and
job creation. Based on the commitments made at the London Conference (January
2010), this conference in Kabul is organized to support the Afghan authorities
to establish a peaceful, stable and prosperous Afghanistan.
Full text of the Statement by Mr. Kanat Saudabayev, Chairman-in-Office of the OSCE and Secretary of State and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan, at the International Conference on Afghanistan