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China and Iran Hold the Second Round of Consultation on the Issue of Afghanistan

On February 24, 2014, Luo Zhaohui, Director-General of the Department of Asian Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Nabizadeh, Director-General of West Asia Office of the Iranian Foreign Ministry held the second round of China-Iran consultation on the issue of Afghanistan in Tehran, and met with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Ebrahim Rahimpour. H.E. Yu Hongyang, Chinese Ambassador to Iran and others were present.

Director-General Luo said that this is a crucial year of Afghanistan's transition. Three major issues of the presidential election, withdrawal of the US and NATO troops and political reconciliation are intertwined. Whether or not these issues can be properly handled bears on the future trend of situation in Afghanistan, and has a great bearing on peace and stability in the region. China hopes to see a united, stable, developing and amicable Afghanistan. China and Iran are direct neighbouring countries of Afghanistan and important stakeholders on the issue of Afghanistan. China attaches importance to communicating with the Iranian side on the issue of Afghanistan, and is willing to further strengthen coordination and cooperation with the Iranian side.

The Iranian side said that this year is crucial both for Afghanistan and the region, and the development of the situation in Afghanistan has entered into a new stage. Iran hopes to see a good-neighborly, friendly and stable Afghanistan and attaches importance to participating in regional cooperation on the issue of Afghanistan, believing that countries in the region should play greater roles in the issue of Afghanistan. The Iranian side supports China to well organize the fourth Foreign Ministers' Conference of the Istanbul Process, and hopes to strengthen communication and coordination with China so as to join the efforts to safeguard peace and stability in Afghanistan and the region.

Both sides agreed to hold the next round of consultation on the issue of Afghanistan in China in due time.

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