UNITED NATIONS, July 19 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki- moon is heading to Kabul for a major international gathering on Tuesday at which he will call on Afghans to unite in the interest of peace and development in their country, his spokesperson said here Monday.
The International Conference on Afghanistan, also known as the Kabul Conference, will be co-chaired by Ban and Afghan President Hamid Karzai. It is the first international conference on Afghanistan to be held in the country and organized by the Afghan government.
The secretary-general "will appeal to the Afghan people to come together to achieve peace through reconciliation and build a future based on economic development and mutual cooperation, with full respect for their nation's sovereignty," Martin Nesirky told reporters.
While in Kabul, the secretary-general will also meet with Karzai and some of the senior officials from the over 70 countries expected to attend the conference, during which the government will present an Afghan-led plan for improving development, governance and security, including priority programs to enhance service delivery.
Tuesday's meeting follows the London Conference held in January, during which the government and its international partners jointly endorsed a strategy of transition to greater Afghan responsibility for the affairs of the country.
While it will not be a pledging conference, it is expected that donors at the conference will align their programs behind the plans and commit to the principles of aid effectiveness.