Transcript of Remarks delivered by President Ghani at NATO Headquarters

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December 1, 2014

President Ghani:
Compelled by tragedy, cemented by sacrifices, NATO and Afghanistan are entering a new phase of our partnership. On December 31st, the combat mission of NATO will end; Afghan security forces are ready and willing to assume our patriotic duty to defend our country and to safeguard the world.

On January 1st, 2015, we look to the new phase of a partnership, which has been earned through much sacrifice and shared responsibility. I pay tribute to more than 3400 NATO personnel who did the ultimate sacrifice of losing their lives, more than 30000 who have been injured and more than hundreds of thousands who have been veterans of combat. Our people have sacrificed to a greater extent. What brings us together is a compelling case of mutual interest.

Afghanistan is in the frontline of struggle but that struggle is meant in the NATO commitment to us that Europe and North America have been saved. We hope that the new phase will bring stability and prosperity to our people, and security to the world.

Mr. Secretary General, we are very pleased to be here and the government of national unity represents the absolute majority of the people and the people of Afghanistan, through their elected representatives, have expressed our consent and consensus regarding this partnership. We look very much forward to implementing it.