Catherine Ashton, the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the Commission made the following statement today: ”I met today with the Foreign Minister of Afghanistan, Dr Zalmai Rassoul. I expressed my deep sorrow and concern over the attack on Shia worshippers in Kabul and other Afghan cities on 6 December.
In our conversation I expressed satisfaction with the outcome of the Bonn Conference on Afghanistan on 5 December and confirmed that the European Union will continue to support Afghanistan during the period of transition and beyond. I stressed that this long-term commitment would be based on the principle of mutual commitments.
Dr Rassoul reiterated to me that the Government of Afghanistan will continue to work on strengthening the country’s democratic institutions. In this context we agreed that the role of women in Afghanistan and their participation in public life merits particular attention.
We also exchanged views on the regional situation. We agreed that Afghanistan’s stability and prosperous development will be in the interest of all its regional partners. The EU will remain supportive of the efforts to enhance regional cooperation.”