17 November 2016, New York; Today, at the United Nations General Assembly during its debate on 'The situation of Afghanistan', the Maldives welcomed the progress in Afghanistan, its commitment to improving the human rights situation, particularly with respect to women and children. The Maldives also expressed its concern over the high number of security related incidents due to terrorist attacks by the Taliban and other armed groups leading to high levels of casualties affecting civilians and innocents.

In its statement, the Maldives underlined the need to creating favorable conditions on ground by strengthening social, political and economic institutions, for lasting peace in Afghanistan. 'By fostering trust, resilience and cohesion across the whole of society, the root drivers of conflict can be resolved and the Afghan people realize their long-held aspirations' said the Maldives.

While the Maldives believed that the Afghan people themselves need to be at the core of the peace and reconciliation process, it also stressed on the important role for continued support from the international community, for long term peace and prosperity in the country, a situation that affects far beyond its borders. The Maldives statement further welcomed cooperation and collective efforts between Afghanistan and regional partners for peace and security and enhanced economic cooperation and connectivity.

Following the debate on 'The situation of Afghanistan' today, the General Assembly adopted the resolution 'The situation in Afghanistan' by consensus. The statement was delivered by Ms. Farzana Zahir, Joint Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Maldives.