China calls for political solution
Chinese Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan called for a political solution to the Afghan issue on Monday last week at the United Nations.Tang, who attended a high-ranking international meeting on Afghanistan, said that China, as a neighbouring country of Afghanistan, was very concerned over the situation in the country. He maintained that efforts should be made to achieve a political solution to the Afghan problem through negotiation and dialogue. Tang, who is at the UN headquarters in New York to attend the general debate of the 56th General Assembly session, made the statement at a meeting there, which attracted senior representatives of six neighbouring countries of Afghanistan, as well as the United States and the Russian Federation. The meeting is known as "the Six Plus Two" meeting on Afghanistan. The six countries are China, Iran, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan - - all countries bordering Afghanistan. The two countries are the United States and Russia. The Chinese Foreign Minister said that under the current situation, the following principles should be honoured when efforts are made to properly solve the Afghan problem: First, efforts should be made to safeguard the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Afghanistan. The basic principles of the UN Charter and international law stipulate the respect for sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of a country. Secondly, the Afghan people should be able to decide on the solution to their problem independently. Thirdly, the future Afghan government should be broad-based, represent the interests of all ethnic groups in the country and develop good relations with Afghanistan's neighboring countries. Fourthly, efforts should be made to maintain the peace and stability in the region. Whether the stability can be restored in Afghanistan is associated with the immediate interests of all its neighbouring countries, and will affect peace and stability in the region, he added. Last, the United Nations should play a more constructive role in solving the Afghan problem. The United Nations and its Security Council have long played a very important role in promoting the peace process in Afghanistan, he said. The process of solving the Afghan problem is very complicated so it would be very helpful for most countries and all factions in Afghanistan to reach consensus on relevant issues if the UN played a positive role.