Delivered by: Her Excellency Lana Nusseibeh, Ambassador and Permanent Representative

Thank you, Mr. President.

I have the honour of delivering this statement on behalf of Japan and the United Arab Emirates in our capacity as penholders on Afghanistan.

Today, the Security Council unanimously adopted two resolutions concerning the situation in Afghanistan. The first extends the robust mandate of UNAMA for another 12 months, in an unequivocal show of support for the Mission and the leadership of SRSG Otunbayeva.

At a time when the Afghan people are facing a set of profoundly difficult challenges, the Council has responded with a strong and unified message – Afghanistan, and in particular, its women and its girls, will not be abandoned.

Mr. President,

On the second resolution we voted on today, I would like to express our deep appreciation for the constructive and valuable engagement by Council Members on the proposal requesting an independent assessment of the international approach to Afghanistan.

This proposal reflects our recognition that Afghanistan faces an exceptional set of challenges, from the severe deterioration of women and girls’ rights, to the rise in humanitarian needs, and the escalating security threat, as well as the unsustainable economic situation.

The scale of the crisis demands a departure from business as usual.

In requesting this assessment, the Security Council is not only demonstrating its deep concern with the alarming trajectory in Afghanistan, but it’s choosing to do something about it. Without a persistent and coordinated international effort, the status quo that contributed to the worst women’s rights crisis in the world is likely to continue.

If we all share the objective of a secure, stable, prosperous, and inclusive Afghanistan – and we believe that today we’ve shown that we do – then we all must be working towards the same objective, in unity. For this, we must prioritise integration and coherence between the efforts of all the relevant actors within and outside the UN system – including those from member states, regional, and multilateral organisations.

Mr. President,

We are grateful for the spirit of cooperation and the sense of responsibility demonstrated throughout the negotiation process, and we believe it will continue to be necessary if we are to live up to our commitment to Afghanistan and to its people. The work truly begins now.

Thank you.