The following Security Council press statement was issued today by Council President Christoph Heusgen (Germany):
The members of the Security Council condemned the announcement by the Taliban of a spring offensive, which will only result in more unnecessary suffering and destruction for the Afghan people.
The members of the Security Council recognized the Afghan people’s strong desire for sustainable peace in Afghanistan. They underscored that calls for more fighting will not advance the goal of making a sustainable peace.
The members of the Security Council called on all parties to the conflict to seize the opportunity to begin an inclusive intra-Afghan dialogue and negotiations that result in a political settlement.
The members of the Security Council reiterated the importance of an inclusive Afghan-led and -owned peace process for the long-term prosperity and stability of Afghanistan and expressed their full support for the Afghan Government’s efforts to that end.
The members of the Security Council reiterated that, as mandated by the Security Council, the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and the Special Representative of the Secretary-General stand ready to provide their good offices to support the Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process, if requested by and in close consultation with the Afghan Government.