ISTANBUL – Presidents of Afghanistan and Turkey H.E. Mohammad Ashraf Ghani and H.E. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan inaugurated with their opening statements the 8th Heart of Asia-Istanbul Process Ministerial Conference convened in Istanbul, today.
Peace, Partnership and Prosperity themed the Ministerial Conference which brought together Foreign Ministers and high-ranking officials of 15 participating countries, 16 supporting countries and 12 regional and international organizations in Istanbul.
The opening statements of the two countries’ Presidents were followed by a group photo of the event’s participants and speeches delivered by the Afghan Acting Foreign Ministers H.E. Idrees Zaman and his Turkish counterpart H.E. Mevlut Cavusoglu.
Foreign Minister Zaman, commending the process and recalling the progress in some major regional projects, maintained that the region is still facing security challenges which require concerted regional effort to be overcome.
“we continue to face the menace of terrorism. We witness an increase in activities of different terrorist groups in our region. This is a common challenge that we have to address together and by synergizing our efforts to combat this menace,” said Acting Foreign Minister Zaman.
The participants of the conference in their interventions throughout the conference reiterated their support of an Afghan led and Afghan owned peace process and and expressed renewed commitments towards the shared vision of the Heart of Asia- Istanbul Process by endorsing the declaration of this important event.
The revised action plans of the seven confidence building measures (CBMs) were also adopted and a new CBM, Women Empowerment, was added to the existing ones.