EU plans for post-Taliban Afghanistan

The EU foreign ministers called on the United
Nations to set up a new, truly representative transitional
government in Afghanistan. Britain, France and Germany put
forward their own proposals for the future of war-torn
Afghanistan, oppressed by the Taliban regime.

The EU called for a new government in Kabul but did not
endorse any of the Member States’ proposals for a
post-Taliban administration, trying to avoid the impression
of imposing a government from abroad. “The Afghani people
deserve a government which is truly representative and
which responds to their needs and aspirations. Such a
government will find a ready partner in the EU,” said the
ministers in a statement adopted in Luxembourg on 8
October.

The EU declared its “full solidarity”
with the US and its “wholehearted support for the action
that is being taken in self-defence and in conformity with
the UN Charter and the UNSCR 1368”.

The EU stressed that a humanitarian
crisis must be avoided in Afghanistan. The EU and its
Member States have already decided to make available 316
million euros to the Afghanis.

The EU has also decided to strengthen
its relations with Pakistan, Iran, India and Central Asian
countries in order to stabilise the region.

 

France's Prime Minister Lionel Jospin

proposed an action plan for Afghanistan in his speech to
the National Assembly on 3 October. The plan puts forward
political and economic measures to help Afghanistan to
rebuild its country and its society. It includes:

  • providing emergency humanitarian aid for seven
    million refugees and displace persons;
  • establishing a consultation framework between the EU,
    the US, the UN, Afghanistan's neighbours and humanitarian
    NGOs on the ground;
  • setting up an interim structure of the UN and Afghans
    to deal with the basic requirements;
  • starting a political process under the auspices of
    the former king and the UN with the view of establishing
    a transitional government;
  • setting up a reconstruction programme with the
    assistance of the EU and international
    organisations;
  • setting up a structure to co-ordinate international
    aid.

Britain's Prime Minister Tony Blair

has announced in the UK Parliament on 8 October that
Britain will help Afganis "to a better, more stable future
under a broad-based Government involving all the different
ethnic groupings". He stressed that the counter-terrorism
coalition was "as important on the humanitarian side as on
the military". "We have established an effective coalition
to deal with the humanitarian crisis in the region, which
of course existed before 11 September," said Mr Blair. The
coalition is trying to re-establish food supply routes into
Afghanistan to help the refugees from the Taliban.

 

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