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EU’s Mogherini makes surprise visit to Afghanistan

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Kabul, March 26 (IANS) Federica Mogherini, the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs who arrived here on Tuesday on a surprise visit, reaffirmed the bloc’s support for the Afghanistan peace process.

In a TV appearance along with Afghanistan’s Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, Mogherini said the EU supported the Afghan people’s desire for “peace, human and women rights, rule of law and development of the country”, reports Efe news.

“The EU will be at your side in this process (peace),” said Mogherini, in addition to offering the bloc’s cooperation for the country’s general election.

Abdullah thanked her for being “a friend of Afghanistan in the position she has been working in” and said she had played a critical role in supporting the war-torn South Asian nation.

Mogherini will meet President Ashraf Ghani and other Afghan leaders.

Her visit comes two weeks after the conclusion of the fifth round of talks between the Taliban and the US on ending a 17-year long conflict in Afghanistan.

At the end of the latest meeting in Qatar on March 12, the Taliban said there had been progress on issues such as the withdrawal of foreign troops, although a concrete draft of the agreement was yet to be prepared.

Due to the ongoing negotiations, where the insurgents have refused to bring the Afghan government to the dialogue table, the presidential elections scheduled for July have been postponed to September 28.

The Afghan government controls just 55 per cent of the country’s area while the Taliban have around 11 per cent and the rest is contested.



(This story has not been edited by Newsd staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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