TASHKENT – Uzbekistan has once again expressed its readiness to host any direct talks between the government of Afghanistan and the Taliban movement, the Uzbek Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday.
Uzbek Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov made the proposal during his meeting with Tadamichi Yamamoto, the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General’s special representative for Afghanistan and head of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), in Tashkent.
Kamilov said Uzbekistan “is ready to create all necessary conditions to organise direct talks between the government of Afghanistan and the Taliban movement in its territory at any stage of the peace process.”
According to the Press service of the Uzbek Foreign Ministry, Yamamoto stressed that the UN and its institutions, particularly the UNAMA, welcome and support the consistent policy of Uzbekistan, led by President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, to start the peace process in Afghanistan.
Yamamoto was on a working visit to Uzbekistan. The two sides reaffirmed their mutual interests in strengthening cooperation against the background of serious challenges and threats that arise from international terrorism, transnational organised crime and illegal drug trafficking, the Uzbek Foreign Ministry said.
Uzbekistan shares a border with Afghanistan in the south and has been participating in the socioeconomic revival of the war-torn country and in the implementation of regional infrastructure projects, including building Railways and electricity lines.
In 2018, Tashkent hosted a high-level international conference on Afghanistan titled “Peace Process, Cooperation in the Sphere of Security and Regional Interaction” where the participants called for an urgent start of direct talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban movement.