Statement on talks held in Afghanistan
Today, Germany's Special Envoy for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Jasper Wieck, and the Dutch Special Envoy for Afghanistan, Emiel de Bont, as well as Germany's designated ambassador to Afghanistan, Markus Potzel, visited Kabul. The delegation held talks with leaders of the Afghan de facto authorities, including de facto Deputy Prime Minister Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, de facto Deputy Prime Minister Maulvi Abdul Salam Hanafi, de facto Foreign Minister Amir Khan Motaqi and de facto Director of Intelligence Abdul Haq Wasiq.
Both sides underlined the importance of continuing operational contacts where practical cooperation is both required and possible, first and foremost with regard to addressing the dire humanitarian situation for the Afghan people. In this regard:
The Afghan de facto authorities committed to ensuring safe and unhindered access for humanitarian aid workers, including female staff, to communities and people in need of such assistance. Germany and the Netherlands reiterated their commitment to provide substantial humanitarian assistance to the Afghan population, all the more as winter is approaching.
The possibility of support for basic needs in addition to humanitarian assistance was discussed, especially with regard to the health and education sectors. In the talks, the leaders of the Afghan de facto authorities expressed their understanding that equal access to education for both girls and boys is a matter of Afghan national necessity. In particular, the general right to attend primary and secondary education up to grade twelve and the need for female teachers to continue their crucial work from grade one through twelve. Curricula for these schools will remain unchanged.
The envoys of Germany and the Netherlands expressed their willingness to explore with international partners the possibilities of channeling direct payment of salaries for health workers and teachers through international organizations.
The leaders of the Afghan de facto authorities reaffirmed their commitment to the general amnesty it decreed upon assuming power and agreed with the need to amplify this message also inside Afghanistan.
They reiterated their commitment to free passage for those who want to leave Afghanistan. Practical cooperation is necessary to allow for this.
We reiterated the necessity of a more inclusive governance that is respectful of the fundamental rights and legitimate aspirations of all Afghans, men and women, girls and boys.
The Taliban leadership reaffirmed its commitment to never allow again the territory of Afghanistan to be abused as a base or a source for international terrorist threats.
We took note of the commitments made. Further engagement will be based on their implementation.
The delegation also met with Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General and Deputy Head of UNAMA, Mette Knudsen, and her team as well as with former president Hamid Karzai and Dr. Abdullah Abdullah.
The delegation thanks the State of Qatar for its good offices and support to make this visit possible.