North Atlantic Council Statement on Afghanistan

  • 12 Sep. 2020 -
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  • Press Release (2020) 076
  • Issued on 12 Sep. 2020
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  • Last updated: 12 Sep. 2020 09:24

Today in Doha, representatives of both the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban took an important step toward bringing lasting peace and stability to Afghanistan after decades of conflict. The Afghan people have long demanded peace, and for the nation’s political future to be based on a solution derived from an inclusive peace process that Afghans own and lead. NATO and its partners welcome efforts to get to this point and urge all Afghans to now seize this opportunity for peace.

We urge the Afghan government and the Taliban to fulfill their commitments to the peace process initiated by the U.S.-Taliban agreement and the U.S.-Afghanistan Joint Declaration. Current violence levels – driven by Taliban attacks against Afghan National Defense and Security Forces – remain unacceptably high and undermine confidence in the peace process. We call on the Taliban to take decisive steps toward ending violence.

We expect the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and Taliban negotiating teams to engage constructively as they seek to achieve a comprehensive peace agreement that puts an end to violence, and builds on the progress of the last 19 years to safeguard the human rights of all Afghans, particularly women, children, and minorities, uphold the rule of law, and ensure that Afghanistan never again serves as a safe haven for terrorists.

Over the past two decades, we have stood shoulder-to-shoulder with Afghan security forces to bring peace and stability. NATO reaffirms its longstanding commitment to Afghanistan, the Afghan people, and the Afghan security forces. We will continue to consult on our military presence and, if conditions allow, to adjust it to support this Afghan-owned and Afghan-led peace process. We went into Afghanistan together, we are adjusting together, and when the conditions are right, we will leave together.

Intra-Afghan negotiations are a real opportunity for Afghans to establish a stable and prosperous Afghanistan at peace with itself, the region, and the world. Now is the time to act to realise that opportunity.