Finland Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto says that Afghanistan’s achievement in the last 20 years, particularly in women’s rights, freedom of speech, human rights, should be preserved in the ongoing peace efforts.
In an interview with TOLOnews, the Finnish foreign minister said the peace negotiations will be tough, but the international community has also its own conditions for the talks.
“This will be extremely difficult negotiations, not only because of the government and the Taliban have different views, but also because of the fact that we have been discussing that international community has also conditions and we are not stepping back of those achievements that have been reached in 20 years in Afghanistan and we don’t have a feeling that we should give up,” Haavisto said.
Meanwhile, on the 20th anniversary of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security, NATO Senior Civilian Representative to Afghanistan Stefano Pontecorvo said Afghan women’s rights is not negotiable and that a durable peace should protect these rights.
“Women’s rights and women's inclusion is not optional or negotiable. It is the most powerful tool to reach peace and to make it last. NATO stands with the women of Afghanistan to advance lasting peace that benefit all Afghans,” he said.
He said Afghan women have been at the forefront of change in Afghanistan for the better and they serve in the security forces, civil society and politics, as journalists, academics, activists and so on.
“Their contribution to society has forever changed the face of Afghanistan,” Pontecorvo said. “Durable peace must build on their achievements, protect their rights and provide a solid platform for Afghan women to keep fighting for equality.”
In a latest development, US Special Representative Zalmay Khalilzad met with negotiating teams of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Taliban in Doha.
According to sources familiar with the matter, the State of Qatar has also expedited its efforts as a facilitator between the two teams.