Statement by Representative of the Russian Federation Dina Gilmutdinova at the “Arria-formula” VTC of UNSC members “Women and the Afghan Peace Process: Ensuring Women’s Participation and Promoting their Rights”
At the outset let me thank the invited speakers for the informative briefings. We have attentively listened to the First Lady of Afghanistan Rula Ghani, Minister of Women’s Affairs Ms. Hasina Safi, as well as Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) Ms. Deborah Lyons, Dr. Habiba Sarabi, Ms. Ghezal Haris, and to the Permanent Representatives of Afghanistan Ms. Adela Raz and of Qatar Sheikha Alya Ahmed bin Saif Al-Thani.
We have carefully considered the objective of the today’s meeting. We stand in solidarity with all people of Afghanistan in their aspiration to end the protracted war, restore peace and stability. A political solution to the conflict in this country remains more relevant than ever, especially now when the window of opportunity for direct talks is open. We have a genuine interest in promoting the Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace and reconciliation process and the subsequent stabilization in the country.
The conflict in Afghanistan has already resulted in numerous civilian deaths, as well as casualties, with women and children on the front line, and displacement. Afghanistan continues to be shaken by large-scale bloody terrorist attacks, including in Kabul.
Russia continues to support bringing all Afghanis together at the negotiating table to decide their own future. Inclusive political settlement with representatives of all parties and socio-political groups, including women, is at the heart of our efforts. We are convinced that broad discussions are the key to achieving peace in the country.
The swift start of intra-Afghan talks is our high priority. We strongly believe this should be a common goal of consolidated efforts of the regional partners and international community that will help Afghan people, including women, to achieve lasting peace. Unfortunately, not all commitments are fully met so far. Further delays in intra-Afghan negotiations, with creating new preconditions, can somehow undermine fragile peace process. We sincerely hope that Afghanis won’t let themselves lose the momentum and will find an “acceptable-by-all agreement” enabling to pave the way to sustainable peace in the country, that is united, independent and free of drug and terrorism. Russia will remain committed to supporting the people of Afghanistan in achieving a peaceful and prosperous future.