The United Nations remains committed to the people of Afghanistan and will continue to support their efforts to build an inclusive, just and peaceful society, said Under-Secretary-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs Rosemary DiCarlo today as she ended a three-day visit to the country.
In Kabul from 7 to 9 December, Ms. DiCarlo met a wide range of Taliban representatives, political figures, women leaders, members of civil society and the diplomatic community and reiterated that the UN will stay and deliver in Afghanistan, where political turmoil has contributed to a dire humanitarian situation.
“The UN has been in Afghanistan since 1949 and, as demonstrated during the recent crisis, we do not intend to abandon the Afghan people,” Ms. DiCarlo said.
During her discussions with senior Taliban representatives, the Under-Secretary-General emphasized the paramount importance of ensuring that all Afghans – men, women, youth and religious and ethnic groups – can take part in governance and public life.
“I had frank and useful exchanges about what needed to be done to bring about an Afghanistan that is inclusive, abides by its human rights obligations and is a resolute partner in suppressing terrorism,” she said. “The Afghan people and the world are very interested in the steps the de facto authorities will take in this regard.”
There is serious and understandable concern about the situation of women and girls in Afghanistan, the Under-Secretary-General continued.
“As I heard again during my visit, the women and girls of Afghanistan want to be able to go to school, work and take part in public life, free of discrimination. The progress that was made in this area must not be erased.”
The Under-Secretary-General also discussed the country’s humanitarian situation, which has significantly deteriorated in the last year. With many Afghans on the brink of starvation, the United Nations has scaled up its aid, providing millions of Afghans with food, healthcare and nutritional support. The problem has been compounded by the liquidity crisis and decrease in delivery of basic services that emerged following the Taliban takeover. Ms. DiCarlo said work continues with international financial institutions and with the international community to alleviate the liquidity situation and prevent a total economic and social breakdown.
Ms. DiCarlo commended the work of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and UN staff in Afghanistan, who continue to support the Afghan people at this critical time.