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ISIL undermines regional security: Karzai

AT-KABUL: The former president Hamid Karzai on Monday said that the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) was undermining the regional security.

Addressing the First annual Non-Governmental Forum of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) in Beijing, the ex-president said that the ISIL has not only unleashed wave of terror in the Middle East, but was also posing serious security threats to Afghanistan and the region.

“While this threat does have implications for security in Afghanistan and our wider region, it is not a homegrown phenomenon nor does it have the ability to find a lasting foothold in our country. However, it can seriously undermine regional security if not contained quickly and effectively,” he said.

Commending the Chinese president Xi Jinping for proposing the forum last year, Hamid Karzai hoped the forum would strengthen cooperation further among the CICA members. He said that despite Asia’s great potential, it is increasingly confronted with great risks and challenges.

“We are trapped by complicated problems of colonial legacy and challenged with circumstances hampering the progress and security of our nations. While we rejoice at our potential, rich cultural heritage, and progress towards becoming the anchor of global security and prosperity, we are pained by a myriad of challenges ranging from terrorism and extremism to poverty and climate change,” he pointed out.

Karzai suggested that to deal with the problems the regional players had to adhere to the principles of peaceful co-existence and respect each other’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

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