By: The Kabul Times
KABUL: President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani held separate meeting with a group of the U.S. senators on the sideline of the 56th Munich Security Conference on Saturday evening, a statement said yesterday.
Chairs of the armed service, environment and public works, banking and urban affairs, and budget committees attended the meeting and discussed a range of issues particularly the Afghan peace process, expanding and consolidating Afghanistan-US strategic relationship and continuing the US support for Afghanistan, the presidential press office said in a statement.
The senators raised their questions on the peace process as well as reduction of the US troops in Afghanistan and its impacts on the status quo, the statement added.
President Ghani elucidated the end of violence and war, addressing the terrorists’ safe havens, cease-fire and achieving a sustainable peace in the country, which is the fundamental demand of the Afghan people. The president called terrorism the main threat posed to Afghanistan, the United States and the entire region, and underscored a joint commitment to tackle the menace of terrorism, recalling Afghanistan’s fight against the Daesh, according to the statement.
President Ghani reiterated that peace is the top priority of the government and demand of the Afghan nation. He stressed that people of Afghanistan support expansion of relations between Afghanistan and the United States, the statement added.
The statement quoted the president saying that Afghanistan was willing to expand its strategic relationship with the United States as a partner, rather than a burden.
President Ghani stressed that the Afghan people sincerely want to build partnership with the United States and said people of Afghanistan have always provided support for such relations. Having talked over development programs, the president said the government has embarked on programs to achieve self-reliance. He added, “We have earned the people’s support on the programs and pursue the objective to stand on our own feet.”
President Ghani emphasized on a peace process, with the Afghan government owning and leading it. “We need to fully understand the possible risks on the way to peace to prevent us from confronting huge challenges, but we welcome any initiative enabling us to get closer to peace,” said the president while explaining possible risks and opportunities on the road to peace.
President Ghani said Afghanistan is pursuing an agenda grounded on regional cooperation, expansion of trade and transit with the Central Asian countries. In this meeting, the first deputy of the State Building Electoral Team, Amruallah Saleh explained and evaluated the existing threats posed by Taliban to the national security of Afghanistan and spelled out the Taliban’s capacity and that how the they drive the ongoing war against the people of Afghanistan using facilities and leadership provided outside Afghanistan.