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US Official:Long-term Afghan Engagement Needed - 2001-11-14


The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations says the world's nations must be prepared for a long-term engagement in Afghanistan, whether it be military or diplomatic.

U.S. Ambassador John Negroponte told the U.N. Security Council that more attention must be paid to the political future of Afghanistan. He said the United Nations must support measures to establish a government in Kabul that represents all ethnic groups in the country. "That authority must be representative of and acceptable to Afghans," he said. "And it must be supported by all of us and especially the countries of the region, or it will not succeed. And an international presence must be established as soon as possible."

Mr. Negroponte also called on the Northern Alliance to exercise restraint as it pushes ahead with apparent military success. He said Afghanistan does not need what he called "another cycle of revenge and retribution." And he stressed the necessity of increasing humanitarian aid as soon as possible.