MOSCOW, March 18. /TASS/. Member states of the extended "Troika" (Russia, China, Pakistan, the US) on peaceful settlement in Afghanistan have signed a joint statement on the outcomes of a meeting in Moscow. The document was sent out to reporters after the talks ended.
The members of the session noted that they "acknowledge the widespread and sincere demand of the Afghan people for a lasting and just peace and an end to the war and confirm that a sustainable peace can only be achieved through a negotiated political settlement."
"We call on all parties to the conflict in Afghanistan to reduce the level of violence in the country and on the Taliban not to pursue a Spring offensive, so as to avoid further casualties and to create an environment conducive to reaching a negotiated political settlement," the joint statement reads.
The extended Troika also called on the sides of the talks to launch a discussion of fundamental issues, including "the foundations of the future peaceful and stable Afghan State, the content of a political roadmap leading to an inclusive government, and the modalities of a permanent and comprehensive ceasefire." "At this pivotal moment, our four states call on the parties to negotiate and conclude a peace agreement that will bring an end to over four decades of war in Afghanistan," the statement says.
"As stated in the UNSC resolution 2513 (2020), we do not support the restoration of the Islamic Emirate and we call on the Government of the Islamic Republic and the High Council for National Reconciliation to engage openly with their Taliban counterparts regarding a negotiated settlement," the document points out.
Aid to Afghanistan
The sides focused on ensuring security in Afghanistan and providing aid to the country in a separate point of the statement. "We call on all Afghans including the Government of the Islamic Republic and the Taliban to ensure that terrorist groups and individuals do not use Afghan soil to threaten the security of any other country," the participants of the meeting said.
"We reaffirm that any peace agreement must include protections for the rights of all Afghans, including women, men, children, victims of war, and minorities, and should respond to the strong desire of all Afghans for economic, social and political development including the rule of law," the document stresses.
"We encourage all concerned countries to support the Afghan people and contribute to a lasting peace in the interest of all. We reaffirm our commitment to mobilize international political and economic support for a post political settlement Afghanistan," the sides reaffirmed.
Russia, the US, China and Pakistan commended the aid provided by Qatar when it comes to peaceful regulation, and expressed support for continuing the talks between the sides in Doha that were held for the first time in September 2020 and led to significant progress.
"We recognize and welcome all international efforts that are underway to facilitate and support a negotiated settlement as soon as possible. We note that the UN Secretary General Gutteres’ appointment of Mr. Jean Arnault as his personal envoy on Afghanistan and regional issues. We welcome the UN playing a positive and constructive role on the Afghan peace and reconciliation process," the document reads.
The meeting of the extended Troika on peaceful settlement in Afghanistan was held on Thursday in Moscow at the level of special envoys. Representatives of the Afghan government and the Taliban movement (outlawed in Russia), as well as representatives of Qatar and Turkey were present at the meeting.