NATO Chief Stoltenberg: We Strongly Support Afghan Reconciliation

Ahead of the North Atlantic Council’s Defense Ministers Meeting which is set to happen on Wednesday, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg addressed a press conference on Tuesday and emphasised that the alliance supports Afghan reconciliation.

Stoltenberg assured that the alliance’s mission in Afghanistan will be discussed in its defense ministerial meeting.

“Allies have been kept closely updated by the United States. We continue to consult on the implications of a possible peace deal and how NATO can support it,” he added.

Stoltenberg also informed that he met with US Special Representative Zalmay Khalilzad and expressed that “it is too early to say if there will be a deal”.

He however assured that NATO will continue to help the Afghan security forces towards making conducive atmosphere for a peaceful solution.

Earlier, US Special Representative Zalmay Khalilzad announced on his Twitter that he met and talked to EU and NATO partners on the sidelines of the conference.

“Encouraged by their strong endorsement on the progress we’ve made on the peace process. Our shared purpose is to reach a peace agreement (not a withdrawal agreement) that is worthy of the sacrifices made over the decades of war”, Khalilzad wrote.

He also wrote that “We went into Afghanistan together, and together we will determine our future posture, based on conditions we determine with Afghans” and added that they all agreed that jumpstarting the intra-Afghan dialogue is an immediate priority.

Meetings of the North Atlantic Council (NAC) at the level of Defence Ministers will be held at the NATO Headquarters on Wednesday 13 and Thursday 14 February 2019, according to the NATO website.

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