Excellencies, Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Foreign Minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif,
Distinguished Media Representatives,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
At the outset, I would like to express my profound gratitude to my dear friend and colleague H.E. Foreign Minister Wang Yi and his entire team at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China for taking the initiative to facilitate and host the 1st China-Afghanistan-Pakistan Foreign Ministers Dialogue in Beijing.
I would also like to thank the government and people of China for the warm welcome and gracious hospitality extended to us and for the excellent arrangements of today’s trilateral dialogue.
Let me take this opportunity to extend Afghan Government’s warm congratulations on the successful conclusion of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, and extend full support for the initiative proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping to build a community with a shared future for mankind.
Afghanistan highly appreciates China’s principle of amity, sincerity, mutual benefit, and inclusiveness and importantly its policy of forging friendship and partnership with its neighbors.
Afghanistan and China are historic neighbours, traditional friends and strategic partners. We remain firmly committed to this. We appreciate China’s sincere support to Afghanistan’s sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity as well as our peace and development efforts. I would also like to express profound gratitude to China for the generous assistance to our reconstruction efforts in the past fifteen years. Afghanistan will always adhere to its strong One China policy and provide strong political support to China in the regional and global arenas.
Counter-terrorism and security cooperation with China will also continue to be a top priority for us in Afghanistan. This of course includes a continued resolute fight against ETIM and their support groups and networks, and overall counter-terrorism cooperation, including against the local and regional supporters and facilitators of ETIM and other terrorists.
We attach great importance to our cooperation under the Belt and Road initiative. We earnestly hope that we can accelerate our joint efforts to fulfill the consensus reached by our two Presidents in this historic framework.
We are grateful for China's generous assistance to Afghanistan in the areas of development and economic growth, security, education and, most importantly, in promoting peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan.
Foreign Minister Wang Yi's visit to Kabul on June 24th following the consensus reached between the two Presidents on June 8th in Astana was important and helped bring us here to this trilateral.
This initiative is a historic opportunity for our three countries to undertake concrete and measurable, time-bound actions against terrorist individuals and organizations, and their local supporters and facilitators in the region.
We are especially grateful for China's consistent efforts to promote cooperation and build confidence between Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Afghanistan firmly believes that improving state to state relations, enhancing mutual trust and utilizing opportunities for deepening cooperation on the basis of mutual respect and mutual benefits between Afghanistan and Pakistan not only serve the interests of the two neighbors, but also contribute to regional peace, stability and development.
Afghanistan has always actively participated in different platforms for consultations and dialogue and has remained sincere in realizing the commitments made in various formats.
Our region is facing common challenges and common opportunities for cooperation. The common challenges that confront us are multidimensional and go beyond the capability of any one individual state to address.
Therefore, it has been a sincere and principled policy of the Government of Afghanistan to seek practical and results-oriented cooperation with the Government of Pakistan in the areas of peace, security and counter-terrorism, and economic development.
In today’s dialogue, we reaffirmed our commitment to improve our cooperation in utilizing common opportunities and countering common threats.
The threat of terrorism is growing by the day and to turn around this trend will require full, sincere and practical cooperation and coordination among states in our own region and beyond to defeat this common menace.
We agreed to cooperate in fighting terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and without any distinction of any sort, including denying safe havens and sanctuaries and support infrastructure to them anywhere in the region.
We must be prepared to take action against elements that prove irreconcilable who continue with violence, including brutal attacks against Afghan civilians in our cities and villages that take innocent lives every day.
At the same time, we must utilize all of our leverage and influence and resources to support a political process of reconciliation that must end the Taliban-led violence in Afghanistan.
China and Pakistan agreed to support an “Afghan-led, Afghan- owned” peace process. We once again call on the Taliban to heed the call of history and come to the negotiating table with the Afghan government at an early date.
On the development side, we had indepth exchanges of view about conducting win-win development cooperation with a special focus on infrastructure development to strengthen connectivity among our three countries including under the Belt and Road Initiative and RECCA.
I would like to once again express sincere thanks to China and personally to my friend H.E. Foreign Minister Wang Yi for strong support to Afghanistan and for launching this unique initiative aimed at promoting peace, security, stability and prosperity among our three countries. Our success will have a direct impact on the regional and global situation. Afghanistan will do everything in our power and ability to make sure this historic initiative succeeds.
With this, I conclude my remarks and thank you all for your attention!