Turkey's foreign minister has said Afghanistan's surrounding region could not be secure unless peace was achieved in this country.
"The history and future of the countries in the region are intertwined. Indeed, Afghanistan is situated at the Heart of Asia, so that its surrounding region could not be secure and wealthy without a safe, stable and prosperous Afghanistan," said Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu Thursday, speaking at the opening of the "Istanbul Process: A New Agenda for Regional Cooperation - Heart of Asia Ministerial Conference" in Kabul.
"It is a pleasure to be here in Kabul today and to co-chair the Follow-up Conference of the Istanbul Process which was initiated about eight months ago in Istanbul, with a vision for a better future for our region," Davutoglu said.
"We strongly believe that the positive energy that has been mobilized through the Istanbul Process will enhance the existing efforts for a stable and prosperous region," he added.
Davutoglu also said problems had gained a transboundary nature and countries suffered from complex challenges that could not be dealt alone.
"These problems can only be overcome through regional ownership and cooperation. We have common interests in countering terrorism, extremism and narcotics. The success or failure of one regional country in standing up to these and other challenges inevitably creates impact on other regional countries. That is why we need ever developing regional cooperation," he said.
The minister said that the Istanbul Process could serve as a platform for creating new synergies among various existing regional efforts with a view to achieving a more effective cooperation in the security, economic, cultural, education and legal fields, placing Afghanistan at its core.
"Given its comprehensive membership, the Istanbul Process, brings the Heart of Asia countries together with regional organizations, the United Nations and other interested partners as supporters; all of which have sincere desire to contribute to the stability and prosperity of Afghanistan and its surrounding regions in a constructive manner," he said.
Davutoglu also said Turkey would surely continue to support Afghanistan in leading such process.
"Regional cooperation, in fact, is one of the priorities of the Turkish foreign policy. This vision is also reflected in our Trilateral Summit Process with two brotherly countries Afghanistan and Pakistan," he said.
"It is a distinct pleasure for me to see such a high-level participation, pledging to take forward the Istanbul Process with sincere intentions. We are confident that the Process will continue in the same spirit of dialogue, cooperation and dedication in the years to follow," Davutoglu concluded his remarks.