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Afghanistan — new approaches towards stabilisation

04 May 2009

The US-led armed operation in Afghanistan, which is now being extended to Pakistan, has not succeeded in bringing the whole of Afghanistan under the Afghan government’s control. For eight years now, the international community has either supported or at least not opposed a military-driven implementation of a complex strategy that was confirmed in the Afghan Compact (London, 2006). Under a strong OEF leadership, the pre-eminence of traditional security and territorial control operations has significantly jeopardised the human security and governance dimensions of the consensual strategy. However, the new American administration has devised a revised strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan. The revision incorporates some new terminology, mediation and regionalisation being at the forefront, while keeping the focus on a military victory over al Qaeda and other terrorist groups. According to most experts, there is, however, a perception of more flexibility on the US side to discuss and implement such strategy. In this context, the meeting discussed the following themes:

  • Regional strategy or regional kaleidoscope?
  • Countering or fuelling insurgency in Pakistan?
  • Whom to negotiate with in Afghanistan?
  • What role for the EU?