President Ashraf Ghani left Kabul for Uzbekistan on Monday to participate in the Tashkent Conference on Afghanistan that will bring together senior officials from around the world to discuss the prospects of peace in the country.
“I left Kabul for Tashkent to attend Tashkent Conference on Afghanistan. On the sideline of the conference, I will met H.E President Mirziyoyev of Uzbekistan, High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini and other heads of delegations,” Ghani tweeted.
During the trip, Ghani will hold talks with his Uzbek counterpart President Shavkat Mirziyoyevon and the two leaders will discuss the expansion of bilateral relations, economic ties and fighting terrorism, the Presidential Palace said in a statement.
According to government, Afghanistan hopes to garner regional consensus on peace and security in the country and the war against terrorism.
”The expected result of the Tashkent Conference is that Afghanistan will build and enhance regional consensus on peace, security and the fight against terrorism and narcotics and regional economic ties,” Ghani’s spokesman Shahussain Murtazawi said.
He said that part of the Tashkent Conference will follow the Kabul Conference agenda on peace and regional ties.
Murtazawi added: “Part of the Tashkent Conference will follow Kabul (Process) conference agenda on peace and regional cooperation; representatives from 23 countries will attend the conference.”
Arrival of delegates continues
The Tashkent summit is expected to be attended by the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, UN Special Envoy to Afghanistan Tadamichi Yamamoto, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, as well as the foreign ministers of China, Russia, the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, France, Turkey, India, Iran, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Throughout Monday, officials arrived in the capital including the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan, Tadamichi Yamamoto, the Turkmen deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Vepa Hadjiyev, Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs of the United States Thomas Shannon and State Minister for Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates Anwar Mohammed Gargash.
On Sunday, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Uzbekistan Abdulaziz Kamilov, and the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan, Hekmat Khalil Karzai, discussed and agreed on a draft of the Tashkent Declaration.
According to Uzbekistan’s Foreign Ministry, the draft declaration, will be submitted for approval to the heads of delegations attending the conference on Tuesday.
Uzbekistan Press Secretary Kamil Alimzhanov said Mirziyoyev will hold a number of meetings on the sidelines of the conference.
On Monday he is expected to meet with Shannon and with Ghani after their arrival, said Alimzhanov.
Ghani is accompanied by senior government officials including the acting minister of foreign affairs Salahuddin Rabbani, National Security Adviser, Haneef Atmar, Finance Minister Eklil Hakimi, Ghani’s senior adviser Hamayoun Qayoumi, HPC secretariat Mohammad Akram Akhpalwak, Hekmat Khalil Karzai MoFA deputy, Mohammad Shakir Kargar senior presidential envoy for the Central Asian States and many others.