New York (IP) – Iran's envoy to the UN has said that establishing an inclusive government sets the foundation for stability and security in Afghanistan.

Iran PressAmerica:  The full text of the statement by Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the United Nations, Amir-Saeed Iravani, before the UN Security Council briefing on “Situation in Afghanistan” in New York on March 6th, 2024 is as follows:

I thank you, Mr. President, for convening this open briefing.

I also thank Ms. Otunbayeva, Special Representative, for her insightful briefing.

We take note of the views shared by Ms. Fatima Gailani, Chair of Afghanistan Future Thought Forum.

Mr. President,

The situation in Afghanistan remains challenging despite UN efforts and measures taken by de facto authorities.

The recent report of the Secretary-General (S/2024/196) estimates that over half the population, about 23.7 million people, will need humanitarian aid in 2024. Economic fragility, affecting 65% of families in 2023, continues to contribute to acute food insecurity.

Mr. President,

Challenges like terrorism, drug trafficking, and border control deficiencies continue and threaten the stability of Afghanistan and its neighbors.

The threat of terrorist groups is causing concern to the neighbors. Regrettably, de facto authorities have yet to implement their obligations to combat terrorism.

Iran as an immediate neighbor still faces challenges with illegal immigration. The migration of millions of Afghans to Iran has brought a burden to our country under sanctions. Unfortunately, the international community and individual countries have shown little sensitivity to this issue.

Furthermore, Iran has been denied access to even the most basic border monitoring equipment under the pretext of sanctions. This underscores the differing priorities and concerns of neighboring countries and the global community regarding Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, the de facto authorities have failed to advance genuine ethnic and political inclusivity. Instead, they have imposed stricter limitations on women and girls, restricting their educational opportunities. Additionally, attacks on minority people, such as the Hazara Shi’a, continue, as confirmed by the UN report.

Mr. President,

As reiterated at the recent Special Envoys Conference on Afghanistan in Doha (February 18-19, 2024), maintaining a continuous international engagement with de facto authorities is imperative to tackling challenges and improving conditions in Afghanistan. In this regard, Iran commends the Secretary-General's efforts and his initiative to enhance this engagement in a more coherent, coordinated, and organized approach.

We stress the importance of prioritizing and carefully addressing the legitimate concerns of neighboring countries in all initiatives aimed at engaging with de facto authorities.

These include the establishment of an inclusive government, safeguarding the rights of all ethnic groups, combating terrorist groups, preventing illegal immigration, and addressing drug production and trafficking. These concerns, to some extent accommodated in the independent assessment (S/2023/856), which underscores positive elements and recommends coherent engagement with de facto authorities.

An inclusive government in Afghanistan can help tackle many problems, like stopping conflicts and reducing the number of Afghan refugees moving to neighboring countries. It sets a foundation for stability and security in Afghanistan and helps protect human rights, especially those of women. For Iran, a crucial sign of an inclusive government is improving the lives of Afghan people and bringing back refugees, which sadly has gotten worse in the last two years, causing us significant hardship.

On the other hand, the de facto authorities demand from the international community a consolidation of sovereignty, the lifting of sanctions, and global recognition.

To achieve these objectives, we believe a comprehensive roadmap explaining step for step and offering tangible measures for any step taken by de facto authorities is necessary.

Mr. President,

Having said that, Iran remains steadfast in its commitment to close collaboration with neighboring countries, relevant partners, and the United Nations to promote enduring peace, security, and stability in Afghanistan.

UNAMA plays a pivotal role in the pursuit of peace and stability in Afghanistan. We reaffirm our full support for UNAMA and the SRSG in fulfilling its mandate. Given the current situation, UNAMA needs to have a robust mandate to assist the people of Afghanistan and uphold peace and security in the country.

And finally, humanitarian aid must remain impartial and unconditional to ensure the Afghan people receive the support they need. Any politicization of humanitarian aid will only harm the Afghan people who rely on this assistance for their survival.

Equally crucial, the sanctions should not have an impact on efforts to revitalize the Afghan economy, as the Secretary-General has repeatedly called for measures to give the Afghan economy breathing room. As such, the frozen assets must be returned in full, without being politicized or conditional in any way.

I thank you.


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