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US development agency prepared to invest in Central Asia's future: Khalilzad

01 Jul 2020 1TV News

The US International Development Finance Corporation is prepared to invest in Central Asia's future, US special envoy for Afghan peace said on Wednesday.

During a visit to Tashkent, envoy Zalmay Khalilzad and CEO of DFC, Adam Boehler met with foreign ministers of Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.

They discussed the latest on the peace process and the critical role Central Asia has played and will continue to play in pursuit of peace; how it will benefit from peace with increased regional connectivity, trade and development, Khalilzad said on Twitter.

"The US appreciates the cooperation & assistance of the C5+1. We will need to work together to promote & encourage a political settlement when intra-Afghan Negotiations begin. Work towards the shared goals of economic resilience, regional connectivity & integration starts now," Khalilzad said.

He said that a stable and prosperous Afghanistan is critical for regional peace, security, and prosperity in Central Asia; "a Central Asia made up of sovereign & independent states working together with Afghanistan bridging to South Asia is in the interest of the region and of the US."

The sides discussed investments in each country and cross-border opportunities.

"We also explored what a pooled, regional development fund might look like," Khalilzad said.

Separately, Khalilzad held talks with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and chairman of High Council for National Reconciliation, Abdullah Abdullah.

They discussed the latest on peace process, reduction of violence, starting intra-Afghan talks, completing release of prisoners and regional support for peace, according to Abdullah.

All sides emphasized on reduction of violence in order to move toward intra-Afghan talks. Khalilzad said peace in Afghanistan means peace and development in the region and that the US is ready to invest in development of the region.

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