The summit named “Afghanistan’s Regional Cooperation Initiative” was held with the participation of envoys of 12 neighboring and regional countries in Kabul.
Under discussion was the need for positive interaction between regional countries and the Islamic Emirate, coordination in the field of regional cooperation, creation of a common region-oriented narrative at a regional level and joint cooperation to make the most of economic opportunities the region has to offer.
Countries represented were India, Kazakhstan, Turkey, Russia, China, Iran, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Indonesia, Kyrgyzstan and Afghanistan.
Speaking at the summit, acting Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi, who was also chairing the event, said that the regional cooperation could be focused on exploring region-centric and engagement pathways based on common regional benefits; creating a region-centric narrative for positive and constructive engagement with IEA to tackle existing and potential threats in the region.
He also said that the Islamic Emirate had good engagements in the fields of trade development and regional transit with regional and neighboring countries over the past two years.
The Acting Foreign Minister emphasized, that regional security remains of grave importance for the Islamic Emirate.
Muttaqi stated that the Islamic Emirate stands ready to engage and cooperate with the regional countries by working together based on mutual interest and mutual respect.
He said since the IEA’s takeover in August 2021, there have been positive developments in the areas of trade and transit with countries in the region.
According to him, the end of the war and the IEA’s “economy-centered foreign policy” has paved the way for the IEA “to work together on common interests in cooperation with the region by creating a region-centric narrative and continue to fight potential threats.”
Muttaqi stated that under the IEA it has “been proven that a regional perspective revolving around economic connectivity with the region at its center constitutes one of the fundamental pillars of the Islamic Emirate’s foreign policy.”
He stated however that the IEA “respects others’ interests, choices, government structures, and development models, and in return, expects others to respect Afghanistan’s interests, and governance and development choices and models”.
He stated that today, Afghanistan is a sovereign, free, and safe country with a “government representing Afghanistan” that “stands ready and has the capacity to conduct talks on common and concerning issues with different regional and international sides.”
He noted that Afghanistan, like any other country, has problems. “A country that has been the target of foreign invasions and interventions and internal wars for nearly half a century, it is not possible to resolve all the problems in a short period of time.
Meanwhile, Dr. Mohammad Naeem, head of the Afghan embassy in Doha, said the Islamic Emirate assures countries participating in the meeting that the IEA gives priority to having positive relations with countries in the region. According to him, the Islamic Emirate wants to convey the message that Afghanistan is ready to be actively present in regional initiatives