by Hamid Karzai, President of Afghanistan at the Joint Press Conference following the Meeting on Afghanistan
Thank you very much, Secretary General Rasmussen, for your very kind hosting of today’s summit on Afghanistan and NATO. And thank you very much, Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, for your always gracious assistance and support to Afghanistan and the Afghan people.
Ladies and gentlemen, we had a very important summit this morning of NATO and Afghanistan in which I, on behalf of the Afghan people, thanked the members of NATO and ISAF countries for the contributions they have been making to Afghanistan in the past nine years, for the sacrifices they have endured and for the assistance they have provided to Afghanistan with their taxpayers’ money.
I thanked them for all that and informed them of the progress and achievement we have made in Afghanistan in the past many years, and also of the continuing difficulties and concerns of the Afghan people.
I thanked them for the sacrifice of the men and women of NATO and ISAF countries in Afghanistan and of the help they provided to education and health and roads and the well-being of the Afghan people that has truly made a great difference to the lives of the Afghan people.
I also informed them of the concerns of the Afghan people with regard to civilian casualties with regard to detentions, with regard to at times NATO’s posture.
We also took at length a discussion on Afghanistan’s plan to transition to Afghan authority gradually to 2014, which was happily and ably confirmed by our NATO allies. The world leaders present at today’s meeting demonstrated a keen awareness of Afghanistan and of the realities there in our country.
We also spoke there about the peace process and the need for the world leaders to back the peace process and I’m glad to report to you now that on all the agendas that were common between us, I found voices of concord and agreement by the world leaders. I once again would express the gratitude of the Afghan people.
And to you, Secretary General Rasmussen, thank you very much for very ably conducting that very important meeting on Afghanistan and for pulling it together in a manner that will benefit the Afghan people for a better future, for a more secure future, for a future in which Afghanistan will contribute towards security and economy rather than one that will be a burden on the world community.
I thank you very much for it, and also thank you for signing today the enduring partnership with us, looked over and approved by the Secretary General of the United Nations. Thank you very much, gentlemen. Very nice.