Japan-Afghanistan Summit Meeting

September 13, 2002

The following is an overview of the Japan-Afghanistan Summit Meeting that took place on the afternoon of September 12 in New York.

1. Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi expressed his sympathy for the Afghan President Hamid Karzai over the recent assassination attempt, and made the following remarks.

(1) While there are limits on Japan's cooperation in military areas, Japan hopes to cooperate as much as possible in the area of nation building. As the nation that hosted the International Conference on Reconstruction Assistance to Afghanistan, Japan will continue to cooperate to the fullest extent possible.

(2) Japan will work with the United States to construct a highway linking Kabul with Kandahar, and has decided to provide cooperation worth $50 million. Efforts will be made so that construction can begin before this winter sets in.

2. President Karzai made the following comments.

(1) The cooperation that Japan has provided to date is deeply appreciated, and Japan's cooperation has been especially important in the area of education. Afghanistan will make efforts in a transparent manner so that the assistance provided by foreign countries, including Japan, will not be squandered.

(2) Afghanistan's greatest needs at present are public order (reconstructing the National Army), an effectively functioning administrative mechanism (the establishment of a system of uncorrupted public officials), and a fiscal system for the country (the introduction of a unified currency, e.t.c.).

3. Finally, in response to an invitation from Prime Minister Koizumi to visit Japan, President Karzai said that he would be delighted to. President Karzai stated that, in addition to the fact that Japan is a beautiful country, he thinks Tokyo holds a symbolic meaning for the recovery of Afghanistan, as the International Conference on Reconstruction Assistance to Afghanistan was held there.

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