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Volume 475: debated on Thursday 15 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the effects of the outcome of the NATO Bucharest Summit on UK policy on Afghanistan. (205053)

The Bucharest summit was an important success for Afghanistan. Attendance of all the key players demonstrated a truly international and comprehensive approach in working towards our common goals in Afghanistan. At the summit, the UK, along with our allies and partners, reaffirmed our common determination to help the people and the elected government of Afghanistan.

The key areas of UK policy in Afghanistan, laid out by my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister in his 12 December 2007 statement to the House, were greater Afghan ownership, localisation and reconstruction. These are fully reflected in the Strategic Vision declaration made by contributing nations to the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan at the Bucharest summit, which sets out clearly ISAF's aims and objectives for Afghanistan. We also welcomed the increased troop contributions announced at Bucharest which addressed the issue of improving burden sharing, also a key priority for my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister.