Speech of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Tajikistan at the London Conference on Afghanistan

 

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Speech of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan
H.E. Hamrokhon Zarifi at the
London Conference on Afghanistan
London, January 28, 2010


Excellencies,

Heads of delegations,

Distinguished friends!

Dear ladies and gentlemen!


At the outset, on behalf of His Excellency the President Emomali Rahmon of the
Republic of Tajikistan and on my own behalf I would like to express profound gratitude to the organizers of this meeting for well-time and valuable initiative to holding the session of historically vital importance.


I also thank the British Government for cordially welcome and warm hospitality extended to me and my delegation since our arrival at
London.


The century-old and native-loving people of
Afghanistan and the fortune of our brotherly country have been in a deep and full crisis with a great number of internal and foreign aspects for more than 30 years.


It is natural that
Afghanistan’s neighbor countries having shared supreme social and religious values, good neighborly relations, historic and modern ties, common religious, cultural, social, ethical, traditional values and principles, friendship between our countries suffer from these problems and are mostly interested in resolving the difficulties of our brothers.


I believe the most important and required condition is to ensure mobilization and harness of internal and constructive potential of
Afghanistan. There is no power: nor regional neither international that can replace the internal power.


Tajikistan has shown great example of national reconciliation which helped our people to find ways of national unity and integration among different powers and groups. This experience could be implemented in neighboring Afghanistan.


From the very first days when the Antiterrorist Coalition and International Security Assistance Forces launched operation in
Afghanistan, we have been continuously stressing the urgent necessity of serious capacity building for military, security and border services of the modern political system of Afghanistan. Moreover, we believe that military, security and border services must be urgently strengthened for account of both - those who share the same views and those who take strong antiterrorist position and have military experience. Comprehensive personnel-training for these services is also of vital importance. In defiance of financial limitations, our country has a number of highly qualified educational and training institutions. We are ready to actively and friendly contribute to the modern military, security and border manpower development.


The strong and clear antiterrorist will and efficient and modern military and security forces aimed to implement the will is of outmost importance. However, it is not the only requirement, as the current problem of
Afghanistan has no exclusively military solution.


An efficient strategy of construction of reconstruction is another vital and working factor. Now all favorable conditions for that are provided:
Afghanistan is rich of natural resources (including water and land resources), mineral resources, gas, precious stones, diligent and constructive people, financial potential as well as support of the international community.


Therefore, I would like to emphasize the basic economic spheres including industry, agriculture, livestock, irrigation and especially economic and technical infrastructure. For instance, construction of a limited number of medium and relatively large hydropower plants as well as reconstruction and development of irrigation system with not so much investment being attracted, gives opportunity to irrigate hundred thousand hectares of lands, create million of jobs and properties, generate electricity that is of vital importance, provide ground for real economic and social development. The construction of Dashtijum hydropower plant alone with total capacity of 4000 megawatt can lead to achievement of the previously mentioned goals.


It is known that Afghanistan for a long time has been a crossroad for large regions including Central Asia and South Asia and its geo-economic and geo-strategic importance as increased many times due to a great number of factors including development and substantial extension of ties and comprehensive relations among the countries, vast regions and numerous national, regional and international actors. It is an opportunity for both
Afghanistan and its neighbor and friendly countries.

 

Herein, the two large and most efficient projects worth noting:

 

- the construction of Tajikistan-Afghanistan-Iran and Tajikistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan railways that further expect to be connected to China through Kyrgyzstan would give opportunity to Afghanistan to earn hundreds million US Dollars and create favorable conditions for overall development. On the other hand, our countries would find the shortest way to China and Central Asia that would be of a great value. Construction of another bridge in Kokul area of Tajik-Afghan border, gas pipe-line and railway Turkmenistan – Afghanistan – Tajikistan would be a principal element in economic rehabilitation of Afghanistan and will have a particular importance for intensification of trade-economic relations of Afghanistan;

 

- construction of only the two large power transmission lines: Rogun-Kabul-Islamabad (CASA-1000 Project) and Rogun-Mazori-Sharif–Herat-Meshed would give opportunity to supply electricity for Afghanistan and border regions of Pakistan and Iran.

 

The efficient and successful implementation of these programs requires qualitatively new cooperation among our countries as well as the regional and interested ones. The cooperation is to have clear constructive and practical nature.


The world community should clearly realize that success of the international strategy of peace assistance and reconstruction and development in
Afghanistan is a challenge which every country faces with. Actually, the success of this strategy is a key factor of peace and stability, broad and efficient regional cooperation. Therefore, both regional countries and international community are to take every strong and consistent effort to ensure effective and comprehensive implementation of the strategy.


Tajikistan shares a long border with Afghanistan which is 1 425 km and protects Europe and rest of the world from narcotic aggression. We therefore, urge the world community to help
Tajikistan in addressing modern challenges related to drug trafficking and weapons smuggling.


Given the importance of regional cooperation,
Tajikistan appeals on the international community afterwards the Kabul Conference to convene a Special Conference on Enhancing Regional Cooperation for the Benefit of Afghanistan in the second half of 2010 in Dushanbe.


Taking the advantage of this opportunity, I invite honorable delegates to help in making our good intentions visible and contribute to establishing a solid ground for enhancement of regional cooperation for the lasting peace, prosperity and bright future of
Afghanistan.


I am convinced more than ever, by joining our hands and acting in concert, we will win a victory over evil and score a great triumph in giving hope to Afghan people.


I thank you and wish deliberations on
Afghanistan every success.