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Dr. Spanta Travels to Tajikistan for Tripartite Meeting

March 31, 2008: Foreign Minister Spanta arrived in Dushanbe, Tajikistan on March 25 to take part in the tripartite meeting between Afghanistan, Iran and Tajikistan. Prior to the meeting, Dr. Spanta was received by the President of Tajikistan, Emomali Rahmon.

President Rahmon reiterated his his commitment to future cooperation between the three countries in strengthening and expanding economic, cultural, transit and scientific co-operation. President Rahmon stressed the significance of Afghanistan’s role as a land-bridge and transit hub for energy. He also emphasized the importance of fighting against terrorism and narcotics through regional co-operation. Foreign Minister Spanta described the many characteristics shared by Afghanistan and Tajikistan and highlighted Afghanistan’s efforts to utilize its unique ability to connect the countries in the region for trade.

Foreign Minister Spanta met privately with Tajik Foreign Minister Mr. Hamrohon Zarifi to discuss issues relating to border security, bilateral relations and economic coordination. Foreign Minister Zarifi announced that Tajikistan is to open its consulates in Kunduz and Badakhshan provinces in the near future.

Deliberations between Foreign Minister Spanta and the Tajik and Iranian Foreign Ministers produced a Joint Statement affirming that the three nations will collaborate against terrorism, extremism, organized crime, drug trafficking and other regional threats. The three sides will implement a June 2003 trilateral protocol for passenger and cargo transfer and will follow up a project for laying railway track stretching from the Iranian city of Sangan to Herat and on to Dushanbe. They also stressed implementation of a 2005 energy project that will make electricity more widely available in Afghanistan.