The recently concluded second post-Taliban parliamentary elections in Afghanistan, held under difficult circumstances, is an important milestone in the vital political process in the war-ravaged country, the UN Security Council has said.
The members of the Security Council welcomed the announcement of the final results for the September 18 Wolesi Jirga elections by Afghanistan's Independent Election Commission said the UN Security Council in a presidential statement issued after a special meeting of the 15-membered body on Afghanistan.
"The Security Council members reiterated that the elections, which have been carried out under difficult security conditions under full Afghan ownership, constitute an important milestone in the vital political process in Afghanistan," said the statement issued by US Ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, who holds monthly rotating presidency of the Security Council for the month of December.
Afghans voted in their second post-Taliban parliamentary election on September 18. President Hamid Karzai could inaugurate Afghanistan's new parliament on January 20, according to reports, after months of uncertainty triggered by widespread fraud during elections.
Earlier briefing the Security Council, the Secretary-General's Special Representative to Afghanistan, Staffan de Mistura, said the country's transition to responsibility for its own security, governance and development, put into motion this year, would result in a realignment of aid but not the country's abandonment.
Mistura warned that the situation would get worse before it got better.
Underlining the importance of political peacemaking, he said everyone, even the Taliban, recognised that there was no military solution.
"In other words, our sentiment is: before it gets better it may get worse," Mistura told the Security Council.
"At the same time, we are detecting from the anti-Government elements an attempt to show some spectacular attacks in order to diversify the feeling of a change of momentum.
What does it mean? That we should be ready, I'm afraid, for the next few months for some tense security environment," he said.
As the US-led international community gear up for transition by 2014, the Afghan Ambassador to the UN, Zahir Tanin, said in the four years ahead the measure of success would be determined by the strength of his country's partnership with the international community.