On 6th of June 2017, Afghan government hosted the first meeting of The Kabul Process for Peace and Security Cooperation involving 27 countries and organizations. They discussed threats of terrorism in Afghanistan, the region and beyond, and measures to counter them, as well as peace and security challenges that affect both Afghanistan and the wider region. The Chairman summarizes the meeting as following:
1-Meeting just after the horrific acts of terror in Kabul that left hundreds of Afghan civilians dead and wounded, this gathering is a powerful signal of solidarity with the Government of Afghanistan and its people in its fight against terrorism and in its effort and aspiration to achieve peace. All participants strongly condemn these heinous acts of violence and all forms of terrorism that undermine the prospects for peace in Afghanistan.
2- A stable Afghanistan enables a stable region. This can only be achieved through an Afghan led and Afghan-owned political process with the full support of neighbors and international partners, as demonstrated in the recent successful peace deal with Hizb-e-Islami Hikmatyar.
3-The participants called on all the armed groups to agree to a ceasefire and start peace talks with the Afghan Government immediately.
4-The region will take a united approach against those who refuse to join the political process and continue to provide the ground for foreign terrorists to operate in Afghanistan. In addition, Participants support all ANDSF efforts to defend the people of Afghanistan and combat all terrorist threats that affect the international community.
5-The participants reaffirmed that a meaningful effort to counter terrorism and establish peace in Afghanistan and the region is through genuine state-to-state cooperation and regional mechanisms.
6-As stated in UN Global Counter Terrorism Strategy as a measure to prevent and combat terrorism, it was emphasized that states must “refrain from organizing, instigating, facilitating, participating in financing, encouraging or tolerating terrorist activities and to take appropriate practical measures to ensure that our respective territories are not used for terrorist installations or training camps, or for the preparation or organization of terrorist acts intended to be committed by other states or their citizens.”
7-Terrorism and violent extremism are an assault on our common humanity. Too many lives have been lost to the violence of extremists, terrorists, and those who support them. While some countries bear a greater human cost from this threat, it directly undermines the security and stability of the region and the world, and challenges the prospects for peace in Afghanistan. Joint and concerted efforts by all countries are needed to address the challenges of terrorism, dismantle terrorist infrastructure, and disrupt all financial and tactical support provided by states, criminal networks and individuals.
8-United by a common desire to bring long-term peace, stability and prosperity, despite this threat, participants strongly support Afghanistan’s vision for an Afghan led, Afghan-owned peace process as articulated by the President of Afghanistan, Mohammad Ashraf Ghani, at the meeting. The vision underlines the principles of equality, pluralism, and inclusiveness, as a foundation for a national peace process. This requires a positive consensus based on constructive state-to-state relations to build trust operating under a properly defined regionally and internationally agreed mechanism to strengthen counter terrorism and security cooperation, which would create space for joint efforts to establish peace.
9-While individual efforts by stakeholders to promote peace and stability are helpful, success can only be achieved through a unified and close coordination of efforts under Afghan the Government’s stewardship of the peace process.
10-A stable Afghanistan is more valuable than an Afghanistan at war. As stated by Chief Executive, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, such stability will enable greater connectivity across the region and the development of integrated approaches to transport, energy, economics, and trade, generating prosperity and enhancing social, cultural and political cohesion for the people of the region.
11-An overarching Afghan-led and Afghan-owned process will provide the forum to take stock of, and reinforce, other Afghan-related initiatives in the areas of peace, security, and regional connectivity. We appreciate the ongoing international efforts for promoting peace and stability in Afghanistan. It was decided to meet again, in configurations within this format, to follow up on the ideas and proposals generated by this meeting and to pursue concrete actions to foster peace and stability in Afghanistan and region.