Bonn Con­fer­ence

Southasia - - Briefing -

Fol­low­ing re­cent un­pro­voked NATO at­tacks on Pak­istan’s mil­i­tary bases and the con­se­quent de­te­ri­o­ra­tion in Af-pak re­la­tions, Pak­istan has de­cided to boy­cott the up­com­ing Bonn Con­fer­ence, cit­ing se­vere en­croach­ment on the coun­try’s sovereignty.

The Con­fer­ence ti­tled ‘In­ter­na­tional Afghanistan Con­fer­ence: From Tran­si­tion to Tran­si­tion,’ is hosted and chaired by Pres­i­dent Karzai and will fo­cus on Afghanistan’s fu­ture fol­low­ing NATO-LED in­ter­na­tional troop with­drawal in 2014. It is ex­pected to draw in more than 90 in­ter­na­tional del­e­gates, rep­re­sent­ing the UN and key play­ers in the con­flict. There are cur­rently more than 140,000 in­ter­na­tional troops in Afghanistan, with the ma­jor­ity rep­re­sent­ing the United States.

Ger­man For­eign Min­is­ter, Guido Wester­welle, had al­ready vis­ited Kabul to hold talks with Pres­i­dent Karzai, be­fore the two at­tend the con­fer­ence. Wester­welle stated that prior to the con­fer­ence Afghanistan had sub­mit­ted a doc­u­ment de­tail­ing its “long-term part­ner­ship with the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity and their mu­tual obli­ga­tions.”

For some an­a­lysts, the con­fer­ence is not ex­pected to reach a break­through res­o­lu­tion due to the ab­sence of the Tal­iban - a key ne­go­ti­at­ing party - and Pak­istan, a key player. Many be­lieve that if a sta­ble and peace­ful Afghanistan is en­vi­sioned, then both par­ties need to be in­volved and a grad­ual frame­work should be pre­pared.

The Bonn Con­fer­ence is ex­pected to dis­cuss the tran­si­tion, stalled ef­forts to rec­on­cile with the Tal­iban and re­gional and in­ter­na­tional in­volve­ment in Afghanistan af­ter 2014. The United States has of­ten ac­cused el­e­ments in Pak­istan of sup­port­ing the Afghan Tal­iban as a means of off-set­ting the grow­ing power of its arch-ri­val, In­dia.

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