Afghanistan’s foreign policy in last 100 years

By: Daoud Nejrabi

Amanullah Khan was one of constitutionalists and freedom loving kings of Afghanistan and from the very days of his kingdom, he placed the issue of independence of Afghanistan as working priority.
In March 3rd of 1919, when he took the throne said: “I accept the kingdom in a condition that you cooperate me in implementation of my thoughts. From domestic and foreign policy point of view, Afghanistan should be completely independent and free.”
Finally, in August 18,1919, he proclaimed officially the independence of Afghanistan and annually, the people of Afghanistan celebrate this day in Assad 28th that is coinciding with abovementioned date.
One hundred years have been passed from temporary diplomacy of Afghanistan i.e. Aug. 19,1919.
The first tours of Ghazi Amanullah were to Iran, Egypt, former Soviet Union, Turkey and a number of European countries that it can be named as the beginning chapter for independent foreign policy and active diplomacy of Afghanistan.
But, a short span of time has been passed from this blossomed policy that Afghanistan faced with domestic skirmishes and tensions stemmed from World War II and establishment of violent Pakistan along the Durand Line and cold war’s conflicts between the then Soviet Union and the USA.
In this direction, Afghanistan for keeping of its power, selected the conservative policy that was executed under the shadow of other countries. In a briefing with a US journalist, the then prime minister had said that we are in opinion that the meaning of neutrality is this that we are not in favor of being involved in world tensions.
Afghanistan wants as an alive and philanthropist nation of the world to live in friendship with all countries of the world.
Till the end of 70s, the machine of diplomacy of the country was changed in its formation in some extent as the executor of proportionate professional foreign policy of the country, but so far, this policy was remained in considerations and personal taste of royal family.
This machine was moving with such idea and there was no certain policy and national interests in international relations. With passing of six decades from independence of the country and blossoming of independent foreign policy and with occupation of Afghanistan by former Soviet Union, in Dec. 1979, the independence of Afghanistan negated again.
In the very days, it was believed that this occupation is irrevocable. But, the people’s uprisings in various parts of the country against this occupation paved the way for the US and its western partners for compensation of defeat in Vietnam and success of cold war, to begin their activities and after passing few years, the occupation issue has been changed into the summit of tension between the two superpowers of the world. In that time, the public diplomacy led by different groups of Mujahidin of Afghanistan while was enjoying from UN resolutions as well as that of international community, parallel with political agencies of occupied Afghanistan, the different agencies of Mujahidin of Afghanistan with the support of Afghan refugees for promotion of their own goals, and for salvation of Afghanistan from occupation of the then Soviet Union were functioned. This caused the assistance of international community also be attracted for this cause. With the agreement of Geneva in 1988 and guarantee of Soviet Union and the USA, roadmaps of peace were signed between governments of Afghanistan and Pakistan sans attending of Mujahidin. Based on the same, Moscow completed the withdrawal of its troops from Afghanistan in very days of 1989.
The aftermath was the political, military transformation inside Afghanistan and disintegration of Soviet Union.
This is in a time that Pakistan experienced its defeats in three great wars with India and this caused Pakistan to be in proxy war in the region and gradually did to create disorder in Kabul and following this, this country did to occupy gradually Afghanistan by terrorist groups and extremists that finally caused our country be occupied completely by Taliban in Sep. 1996. Then, Pakistan made effort to harm the international credibility of Afghanistan.
With withdrawal of Taliban from Afghanistan, the new page has been opened in foreign policy and foreign relations of Afghanistan with the world. The first foreign tours of president Karzai in 2001 were began to establish cooperation agreements and ties between Afghanistan and the world nations. During his 13 years government, Hamid Karzai had 167 tours to different world countries. Majority of those tours were aimed to absorb the cooperation of those countries to Afghanistan. Likewise, in those tours, he did to sign several accords and security pacts between Afghanistan and other world nations.
In last year of his rule, with emotional speeches, Hamid Karzai enumerated as the factor behind political instability in foreign policy and relations.
In oath ceremony, president Mohammad Ashraf Ghani spoke about efforts of majority countries for keeping warm the battlefield in Afghanistan and emphatically had suggested that for removal of these challenges and establishment of good ties with partners and ensuring of security in the region, he would have clear policies.
He regarded as the main pivot, the expansion of five circles in foreign policy of his government with other nations, president Ghani added that need is felt for coordination and management of foreign policy that be resulted to security and prosperity so that to specify our five circles of relations in regional and world level.
In his first working day as the president, Ghani signed security and defense agreement with the US and pledged to expand relation with the world specially with the US.
Within six months of his tenure, president Ghani had eleven tours to the world nations and within these tours, he signed seven agreements of security and economy.
In NATO summit that was accompanied by Chief Executive Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, president Ghani asked for continuation of security cooperation to Afghanistan.
Similarly, the visits of Dr. Abdullah from India and president Ghani’s tour to Saudi Arabia were more effective in peace process in the country and led to great tension of Pakistan and such tensions between the two countries were the headlines of media and public opinion.
With all tensions existed in foreign policy of Afghanistan, we can say that this policy is controlled and managed by this country and in connection with foreign policy of Afghanistan, a political consensus is being formed that based on it, Afghanistan would enjoy from peace and expansion of economic relations among regional countries and stable political foreign relations can cause regional and world stability.

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