His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai,receives Dr Mohammed Ashraf Ghani, President of Afghanistan,at Zabeel Palace.-Wam
'I want all peace- loving countries to help Afghanistan in its struggle to restore peace and stability to the nation,' says Fazlullah Reshteen, Charge d'affaires of the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in the UAE.
August 19 commemorates the Anglo-Afghan Treaty of 1919 and is celebrated as the Independence Day of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. On this day, 96 years ago, a nation was born with aspirations for sovereignty, peace and prosperity.
Fazlullah Reshteen, Charge d'affaires of the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in the UAE, has an ambitious purpose in his official capacity - to bring the people of Afghanistan and the UAE closer together.
"We celebrate this day with joy. Our elders strived hard and fought for our independence. We appreciate and remember their sacrifices," he says in an interview with Khaleej Times.
"It is not enough to have political independence, we should also have economic and cultural independence. Therefore, we have to work hard and should not allow others to impose their culture on us or interfere in our internal affairs," he added.
The relationship between Afghanistan and the UAE continues to be a historical and friendly one. "Afghanistan and the UAE signed a strategic Partnership Treaty in January 2015 and opened the door to cooperation between the two countries in political, economic, security and cultural fields," he informs.
The UAE has always been a good friend of Afghanistan and has stood beside the nation and its people, especially during hard times. Interestingly, the biggest trade partner for Afghanistan in the Middle East is the UAE.
Noting the improving relations between the two countries, he says, "We will soon sign an agreement with the UAE like labour supply from Afghanistan to the UAE. We are working on the implementation of 12 agreements and treaties signed between our two nations. We encourage UAE nationals to invest in Afghanistan. We also encourage Afghan businessmen in the UAE to invest in Afghanistan. We arrange meetings between UAE and Afghan businessmen to improve trade relations between the two countries."
Security issues and the interference of some countries in the internal affairs of Afghanistan are some of the major challenges for Afghanistan. However, the UAE is a good place for marketing Afghan products such as carpets, handicrafts, dry and fresh fruits.
Reshteen notes that the training of 5,000 Afghan clergymen by the UAE government is a recent initiative between the two countries. Afghanistan strongly supported the UAE in its bid for Expo 2020.
A visit by Afghan President Dr Mohammed Ashraf Ghani to the UAE in January 2015 and talks on bilateral relations between the two countries are considered milestones in recent UAE-Afghanistan bilateral relations. The UAE government has agreed to fully support Afghanistan in political, economic and cultural fields as well as in security.
As Charge d'affaires, Reshteen wants to see peace and stability established. "My dream is to see my people have a good life like the people in the UAE. This objective can be achieved with the support of the UAE and other friendly countries. The UAE really wants peace in Afghanistan because the nation knows that peace will follow to other countries as well," he stresses.
He adds that the UAE governance is a role model for other Muslim countries. "The UAE is a good example of a modern country. There is peace and stability here. Over 200 nationalities live in the UAE. All are busy with their work. People from all over the world come here for business and work. There are thousands of tourists coming to the UAE to enjoy the beauty of the country and also shop in modern shopping centres and malls," he concludes.
. Worked as a lecturer in a school and university in Kuwait.
. Started a career in diplomacy at the Afghanistan Embassy in Kuwait for four years.
. Returned to Afghanistan and served in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for two years.
. Appointed Deputy Head of Mission at the Afghan Embassy - Abu Dhabi.
. Political Development in Afghanistan. Obstacles and Challenges.
. Democracy in Afghanistan.