UN News Update : appoints personal envoy on Afghanistan

Insight Online News

United Nations, March 18 : UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has appointed French diplomat Jean Arnault as his personal envoy on Afghanistan and regional issues.

The Secretary-General has asked Arnault to assist in achieving a political solution to the conflict, working closely with the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan and regional partners, Guterres’ press office said in a statement on Wednesday.

According to the statement, Arnault brings over 30 years of diplomatic experience in peace settlements and mediation, with an extensive background in UN missions in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America, including Afghanistan, Xinhua news agency reported.

The personal envoy will be responsible for liaison with regional countries to support the negotiations between the Afghan government and the Taliban, as well as the implementation of any agreements which are reached, said Stephane Dujarric, Guterres’ spokesman.

The appointment came ahead of multilateral peace talks on war-torn Afghanistan in Moscow on Thursday, which will include an Afghan government delegation and representatives of the Taliban, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry.

Meanwhile, Turkey would also arrange a US-proposed conference on the Afghanistan peace process early in April.

The Secretary-General remains ready to support initiatives for advancing the Afghanistan peace negotiations, said Dujarric.

The concurrence of the parties will underpin any progress toward a political settlement, he added.

IANS

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