The European Parliament on December 14 warned that political and economic progress in Afghanistan is visible, but still fragile. And, it could be reversed by growing security challenges, said MEPs.

While per capita GDP has grown fivefold, life expectancy has increased by almost 15 years and the number of girls attending schools has also risen, this progress is very fragile and reversible, MEPs said.

According to a European Parliament press release, the resolution stressed that despite major international efforts, Afghanistan is still facing a serious conflict. The security situation has deteriorated and the number of terrorist attacks has multiplied, resulting in the highest number of casualties since 2009, says the text.

MEPs are alarmed by the Taliban’s ongoing territorial expansion and by the recent strengthening of the Islamic State and Al-Qaeda terrorist groups.

They said internal reconciliation and Afghan-led and -owned peace process is the only way forward. MEPs urged the Afghan government to pursue further reforms and stable relations with neighbours, and to fight corruption, radicalisation, terrorism and its financing.

The resolution welcomed EU efforts to promote peace and stability, to strengthen democracy and the rule of law, to promote good governance and women’s empowerment in Afghanistan. It called on the EU “to actively support an Afghan-led disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration programme for former insurgents”.