Following is the text of the historic joint Declaration between Afghanistan and Pakistan which was signed by the two foreign ministers in the presence of the Presidents of Afghanistan and Pakistan, in Kabul this afternoon.
Joint Declaration Between The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan And The Islamic Republic of Pakistan on Directions of Bilateral Cooperation
The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan,Recalling their historical, cultural and religious bonds;Firmly believing on the need to open a new visionary chapter in their bilateral relations to further strengthen the overall good neighborly relations and mutual cooperation between the two countries, as well as to enhance regional cooperation and world peace;
Stressing on mutual respect for each other’s sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity as well as on the principle of non-interference in each other’s internal affairs according to the United Nations Charter, Kabul Declaration on Good-Neighborly Relations as well as Ankara and Istanbul Declarations;
Affirming their deep commitment for working resolutely towards making the South Asia an abode of stability, peace, prosperity and moderation;
Recognizing that militancy, extremism and terrorism are common threats to both countries as well as to the region and the world at large;
Encouraging the vital role of moderate, progressive and democratic forces;Reaffirming their deep commitment to completely eliminate the scourge of militancy, extremism and terrorism in all their forms and manifestations, including entities promoting them;
Reaffirming their sincere commitment to develop closer bilateral relations and to pursue forward-looking policies in all fields,In this spirit, and with a view to create sound foundations for deepening bilateral cooperation in all fields, the two countries hereby agree as follows:
1.Â Â Â Â To maintain frequent exchange of high level visits and contacts and to strengthen the exchange of visits and communications between the governmental departments, parliaments, armed forces, security agencies and non-governmental organizations of the two countries with a view to enhance mutual understanding and friendship in all fields.
2.Â Â Â Â To remain fully supportive of the Joint Peace Jirga process.
3.Â Â Â Â Â To remain fully engaged with other frameworks of cooperation between the two countries.
4.Â Â Â Â To further develop a joint comprehensive strategy for combating terrorism and strengthening bilateral cooperation by the Ministries of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan and Pakistan.
5.Â Â Â Â To closely cooperate with each other as well as with the international community to counter and completely eliminate the menaces of militancy, extremism and terrorism from the region.
6.Â Â Â Â To cooperate closely for the complete eradication of narcotics drugs and psychotropic substances, including their production, consumption and trafficking from the region.
7.Â Â Â Â To make full use of their historical, political and geographical advantages as well as the region’s rich resources in order to promote bilateral and regional cooperation in all fields, especially in the realms of economy, trade, transit, investment, agriculture, education and technology.
8.Â Â Â Â To take urgent steps to improve connectivity through quantitative and qualitative improvement in infrastructure, especially improving and adding road and rail links and building transportation, transit and communication corridors connecting the entire region.
9.Â Â Â Â To collaborate closely in developing energy corridors in the region via Afghanistan, including building oil and gas pipelines and electricity networks.
10.Â To develop bilateral programs and projects for the exploitation of mineral resources and other fields in their respective countries. In this context, they express their readiness to seek assistance from third parties on the basis of mutual interest and agreement.
11.Â To promote bilateral trade on preferential terms and working expeditiously towards full implementation of the South Asia Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) and Economic Cooperation Organization Trade Agreement (ECOTA).
12.Â To encourage cultural as well as people -to-people exchanges and contacts, especially between the academia, think tanks, media and civil society of the two countries.
13.Â To cooperate closely in regional and international forums, including the United Nations (UN), the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC), Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) and South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC).
Kabul, Afghanistan 6th January, 2009
Dr.Rangin Dadfar SpantaÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi
Minister of Foreign AffairsÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Minister of Foreign Affairs
IslamicÂ Republic of AfghanistanÂ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Islamic Republic of Pakistan