The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.

Foreign diplomats focus on peace, COVID-19 in Nowruz messages

Coronavirus overshadows New Year festival in Afghanistan

By: The Kabul Times

KABUL: The foreign diplomats based in Kabul in their congratulatory messages on the occasion of Afghanistan’s New Year 1399 (Nowruz), called for greater efforts for peace by ending political discord, and urged more attention to fighting the coronavirus outbreak in the country.The British Ambassador to Kabul Alison Blake said the world is facing an unprecedented challenge and “we need to come together and put aside political and all differences to tackle it.” She reiterated that the UK stands with Afghanistan and its people. US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, Zalmay Khalilzad, in his message on Nawroz called on Afghan politicians to reach an agreement on an inclusive government. Khalilzad said the best gift Afghan leaders can give the country in the solar new year is to reach an agreement on an “inclusive government” to end the political crisis, take the “needed steps” to take advantage of a “historic opportunity for peace,” and to work together–including the Taliban–to contain and take care of the people from the scourge of the coronavirus. EU ambassador in Kabul, Pierre Mayaudon, wished a prosperous year for Afghans and said unity is crucial at this moment. “We know that peace has never been so close but for this peace to correspond to your aspirations, to be a peace of freedom and dignity for all Afghans, it is absolutely crucial that you are united, you put national interests first and you stay firm in defending and promoting the gains of the last 19 years. In this endeavor, you have all the support of the European Union,” the EU envoy said. “Nevertheless, in the interest of health, your health and the health of your families, I encourage you to follow the instructions provided by the official authorities,” he said, regarding the coronavirus. NATO Senior Civilian Representative to Afghanistan, Nicholas Kay, also called for efforts to end the political crisis in the country. “My hope this Nawroz is that Afghan people will have their wishes come true. They wish to see their political leaders unite themselves and unite the country in the interests of peace and fighting the coronavirus,” Kay said. He called on the Taliban “to respect the wishes of the Afghan people to have a humanitarian pause in the combat so the country can unite and fight the coronavirus together.” The Canadian ambassador to Kabul, Dave Metcalfe, said “this Nawroz brings special meaning to all of us with the prospects for peace within reach.” “Canada proudly supports the efforts of Afghans for bringing positive change in the country and who fight tirelessly to build prosperity and advance the equal rights of every member of the society,” he said.He said there could be nothing greater than the achievement of inclusive peace this year.India’s embassy in Afghanistan, in a message on Twitter, wished Afghans a happy and prosperous Nawroz and recommended to Afghans to stay safe and take all precautions to avoid COVID-19.


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The Kabul times, Afghanistan Trustable News Agency.