Declaration by the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan on an Enduring Partnership

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Context

1. Recognising that stability and prosperity in Afghanistan are of strategic importance to the security of the North Atlantic region, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) and the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, after seven years of joint endeavour and sacrifice, believe the time is right to reaffirm their long-term partnership. Afghanistan is increasingly capable of exercising its leadership across the inter-linked domains of governance, development and security. With sustained political, development and humanitarian effort from the United Nations Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) and respecting Afghanistan's sovereignty and leadership, the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, NATO and its partners in the UN Security Council-mandated International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) are preparing the ground for implementing a process of transition which is consistent with the Framework for Inteqal endorsed by Afghanistan and the International Community at the Kabul conference in July 2010. Transition will further NATO's efforts to help the Afghan people build a durable and just peace and the start of the transition process provides an appropriate opportunity for NATO and the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to renew and build a robust, enduring partnership which complements the ISAF security mission and continues beyond it.

Principles and Purpose

2. This declaration is intended to be coherent with international efforts, under UN leadership, to support Afghanistan as part of a comprehensive approach. It builds upon the Declaration by the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan of 6 September 2006 and existing programmes under the Afghan Cooperation Programme, as most recently endorsed by the North Atlantic Council on 1 March 2010, and the Building Integrity Initiative and NATO Afghan First Policy. It is also intended to be consistent with the provisions of the Afghan National Development Strategy.

3. NATO re-affirms its long-term commitment to a sovereign, independent, democratic, secure and stable Afghanistan that will never again be a safe haven for terrorists and terrorism, and to a better future for the Afghan people. In pursuit of that goal, and recognising Afghanistan as an important NATO partner, NATO intends to provide sustained practical support to Afghan security institutions aimed at:

- sustaining and improving their capacity and capability to counter threats to the security, stability and integrity of Afghanistan effectively, and contributing to regional security; and

- doing so with full respect for Afghan sovereignty and leadership, in a manner consistent with and supportive of the Afghan constitution and international law and recognising the sacrifices and the ongoing endeavours of the Afghan people for achieving peace.

4. The Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan reaffirms its commitment to:

- actively carry out its security, governance and development responsibilities in a manner consistent with the commitments made at the London Conference of January 2010 and the Kabul Conference of July 2010 such as combating terrorism, strengthening the economy, addressing corruption, regional security and economic co-operation and respect for human rights, in particular the rights of women;

- be an enduring partner to NATO and provide NATO with the necessary assistance to carry out its partnership activities within the framework of this declaration; and

- recognise the importance and relevance of broader regionally- owned co- operation, coordination and confidence building between Afghanistan and its regional partners, as exemplified in the Istanbul Statement.

5. NATO and the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan will strengthen their consultation on issues of strategic concern. …