12/10/2004
Press Release
SC/8217


Security Council

5056th Meeting (AM)


SECURITY COUNCIL STRESSES ‘HISTORIC IMPORTANCE’ OF AFGHANISTAN ELECTION,


Congratulates Voters for Commitment to Democracy

 


In a separate meeting following an open briefing this morning on the 9 October presidential election in Afghanistan, the Security Council stressed the election’s historic importance as a political milestone, and congratulated the millions of Afghan voters who showed their commitment to democracy by participating in the first popular election of their Head of State. 


Through a statement read out by its President for the month, Emyr Jones Parry (United Kingdom), the Council welcomed further the broad political representation, as manifested by the 18 presidential candidates.


The Council also commended the Afghan National Police and the Afghan National Army for their role, with the assistance of the international security forces, in bolstering security during the election period.  It also appreciated the election preparations achieved by the Joint Electoral Management Body (JEMB) and the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA).


At the same time, the Council urged the Afghan Government to continue to confront the remaining challenges, including:  security; timely preparation of the parliamentary elections next April; reconstruction; the fight against narcotics; and the disarmament, demobilization and reintegration of the militias.


In that connection, it called on the Afghan authorities to plan and carry out “without delay” inclusive parliamentary elections and called on the international community to support them in completing the electoral process set out in the Bonn Agreement.


The meeting began at 11:30 a.m. and was adjourned at 11:34 a.m.


Presidential Statement


The full text of the presidential statement, to be issued as document S/PRST/2004/35, reads as follows:


“The Security Council welcomes the presidential election that took place on 9 October 2004 in Afghanistan, stresses its historic importance as a milestone in the political process, and congratulates the millions of Afghan voters, many of them women and refugees, who showed their commitment to democracy by participating in the first popular election of their Head of State.  The Council welcomes further the broad political representation, as manifested by the 18 presidential candidates.  The Council commends the Afghan National Police and the Afghan National Army for their role, with the assistance of the international security forces, in bolstering security during the election period.


“The Security Council appreciates the effort of the Joint Electoral Management Body (JEMB) and the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) for their excellent achievement in the preparations of the presidential election.  The Security Council appreciates the JEMB’s efforts to address any candidate’s concerns and to further enhance the transparency of the electoral process, and looks forward to a final statement.


“The Security Council urges the Government of Afghanistan, with the help of the international community, to continue to confront the challenges that remain in Afghanistan, including security, timely preparation of the parliamentary elections in April 2005, the reconstruction of institutions, the fight against narcotics, and the disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration of Afghan militias.


“The Security Council calls upon the Afghan authorities to plan and carry out without delay inclusive parliamentary elections and calls upon the international community to support them in completing the electoral process set out in the Bonn Agreement.


“The Security Council pledges its continued support for the Government and people of a sovereign Afghanistan as they rebuild their country, strengthen the foundations of constitutional democracy, and assume their rightful place in the community of nations, and calls upon the international community, with the UN in a central role, to support them in these efforts.”


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