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Wednesday, June 25, 2008 - 5.37 GMT
Foreign Minister calls on Afghan President


The call by the Foreign minister Rohitha Bogollagama on President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan in Kabul on 24th June, had as its outcome a clear meeting of minds on the need for SAARC to resolutely address the contemporary challenges facing the South Asian region. Towards this end the energy crisis, the rising food prices and the suppression of terrorism were identified as requiring a special focus during the forthcoming SAARC Summit in Colombo.

Minister Bogollagama’s visit to Kabul was in the context of his current tour of the SAARC nations to formally invite the regional leaders on behalf of President Mahinda Rajapaksa, to the Colombo Summit.

The Foreign Minister while exchanging views with President Karzai and Foreign Minister Rangin Dadfar Spanta on SAARC issues, also addressed the further strengthening of bilateral relations with Afghanistan. Minister Bogollagama’s view that the establishment of an effective sectoral delivery mechanism would significantly enhance the present levels of economic and commercial cooperation in the region, was endorsed. On the bilateral plane, it was resolved that better commercial links through the engagement of the respective trade chambers, would be facilitated. Collaboration in the fields of cultural relations and educational cooperation would also be stepped up.

Minister Bogollagama briefed his interlocutors on Sri Lanka’s endeavors to combat the terror of the LTTE and the positive developments in the Eastern Province of Sri Lanka. He heard of Afghanistan’s own successes against terrorism, including through the strengthening of the capacities of the Afghan Armed Forces. Nevertheless, the discussion also revealed that the terrorism practiced against the people of Afghanistan has now taken a particularly sinister twist, due to the LTTE technique of suicide bombers, being applied through the recruitment of children for this purpose. Given the threat faced by the two societies, the utility of providing Police training by Sri Lanka to Afghanistan complemented by bilateral collaboration in intelligence sharing, was identified.







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Last modified: July 22, 2009.

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