Paet: Afghanistan Must Become Capable of Taking Over Security Responsibilities
Eestlased Eestis 28 Jan 2010  EWR
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At the international Afghanistan conference in London, Foreign Minister Urmas Paet said during the next few months a situation should be created in which security responsibilities can gradually be handed over to the Afghan authorities.

Paet stated that giving responsibility for the nation’s security to the local authorities is an important step for the building of the Afghan state. “We must also achieve agreements on the extent to which the international community is able to support and finance Afghan security forces,” he added.

At the London conference, Paet confirmed that Estonia will continue to contribute to Afghanistan. “Estonia’s principle is that we will stay in Afghanistan for as long as needed, but we will withdraw our troops as soon as possible,” confirmed the foreign minister.

According to the foreign minister, Estonia is also planning on contributing to Afghanistan’s Peace and Integration Trust Fund. “Afghanistan’s job in the near future is to begin a reconciliation process within society. President Karzai says that everyone who honours Afghanistan’s constitution and is not linked to terrorist organisations is welcome to participate,” said Paet.

The Estonian foreign minister stated that it is also essential to include Afghanistan’s neighbouring countries in the rebuilding process more that previously.

The conference in London is taking place on the foreign ministerial level and all 44 nations that contribute to the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), Afghanistan’s close neighbours, the UN, the European Union, and the World Bank have been invited to attend.

Within the framework of the conference, Foreign Minister Urmas Paet also has bilateral meetings scheduled with the foreign ministers of Jordan, Australia, and Turkmenistan.

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