Japan's Official Development Assistance White Paper 2009

Chapter 2 Assistance to Afghanistan and Pakistan

The destabilization of Afghanistan and Pakistan must be viewed not as a problem solely of the two countries or the region, but as a global problem. Japan and the rest of the international community have actively provided assistance to prevent Afghanistan from reverting to a hotbed for terrorism. Also, the stability of Pakistan, a country which has been playing a critical role in the eradication of terrorism through its anti-terrorist clean-up operations in the regions bordering Afghanistan, is a key to the peace and stability of the region and the international community. The stability of Afghanistan and Pakistan is interrelated, and it is imperative that assistance be provided to the two countries taking into account regional linkages, which include the two countries, Central Asia, and Iran. In light of this, the Hatoyama administration identifies assistance to Afghanistan and Pakistan as one of the most important issues that the international community should tackle, and in November 2009 unveiled the New Strategy to Counter the Threat of Terrorism. Based on this new strategy, Japan will support the realization of stability and prosperity in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Section 1 Reconstruction Assistance to Afghanistan

1. International efforts aimed at stability and development

The conflicts which had been going on in Afghanistan for over 20 years destroyed the basic system forming the framework of the country including the foundation of livelihood such as economic and social infrastructures. International cooperation in the country has been underway, as a part of the efforts of the international community to eradicate terrorism following the terrorist attacks in the United States on September 11, 2001. In 2004, a new constitution was established, and a presidential election took place. In August 2009, Afghanistan had its second presidential election, and in November of that year the reelection of President Hamid Karzai was affirmed. It is essential that the Government of Afghanistan and the international community work together to secure the stability and development of Afghanistan in the aftermath of the establishment of the new government, on such issues as the restoration of security, strengthening of governance, reconciliation with and reintegration of the insurgents, development of basic infrastructure, eradication of illegal drugs cultivation, and expansion of assistance to rural areas.

In March 2009, an international conference on Afghanistan was held at The Hague in the Netherlands. During the G8 Foreign Ministers' Meeting in June, a G8 + Afghanistan and Pakistan meeting and a meeting including a wide range of relevant countries and organizations were held. At the meetings, the international community agreed on the importance of regional efforts for the stability and reconstruction of Afghanistan.