Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel visited Afghanistan on Wednesday (20 December). His schedule included a visit to the German military camp in Mazar-i Sharif and political talks in Kabul, where he met President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah.
Significant progress has been made in Afghanistan in recent years. The Government has launched important reforms and furthered unity. However, the country continues to face major political, social, economic and military challenges. The reform process in Afghanistan must be fostered, particularly as regards the rule of law and combating corruption. Fair and peaceful elections must be held. Progress is also needed in the country’s national peace process.
Germany is providing civilian and military stabilisation support
Germany has been active in civilian and military roles in Afghanistan since 2001. The focus here is on stabilising the country. Germany is the second largest bilateral donor after the United States. In the civilian sector, it is supporting the development of the police and state structures, reforms in the judicial administration and enhancing civil Society. In the military sector, Germany is working with NATO in Afghanistan. It has provided up to 980 soldiers to NATO’s Resolute Support mission, which has been training, supporting and advising the Afghan armed forces since 2015, with the aim of enabling them to take over security responsibility for the country on their own in the future. As a framework nation, Germany has taken on responsibility for the training commando in northern Afghanistan. This support will be continued. The German Bundestag recently extended the mandate for the mission. Foreign Minister Gabriel paid tribute to the soldiers’ work by visiting Camp Marmal in Mazar-i Sharif.
Rebuilding the German Embassy and Consulate General
Germany is currently working under difficult conditions in Afghanistan.
Both the Consulate General in Mazar-i Sharif and the Embassy in Kabul were hit by terror attacks in 2016 and 2017. Germany is counting on Afghanistan’s support in rebuilding the missions and in investigating the attack in Kabul.