23 June 2011

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Secretary-General Welcomes Announcement of United States Military Drawdown


in Afghanistan, Stressing Need for All-Inclusive Political Process

The following statement was issued today by the Spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:

The Secretary-General welcomes President Barack Obama’s announcement to start the drawdown of American forces in Afghanistan as of July 2011.

The United Nations views this decision asthe beginning of a transition to greater responsibilities of the Afghan Government and ultimately to full Afghan leadership and ownership.  It is important that the United States, as well as the international community, remain committed to an enduring partnership with Afghanistan for both security and development.

Turning the page on decades of war will be long and extremely challenging.  A peaceful and stable Afghanistan must be based on an Afghan-led and internationally supported political settlement between all Afghans who break from terrorism, abandon violence and abide by the Afghan Constitution.  Only an all-inclusive political process can restore peace and open again the opportunities to normal life and prosperity for Afghan men, women and children.

As mandated by the Security Council, the United Nations will continue to provide all necessary assistance to the Afghan people and theirAfghan Government.

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For information media • not an official record