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Last Updated: Thursday, 13 March 2008, 04:47 GMT
UN call to sharpen Afghan mandate
Afghan refugee women with their children  Kabul, May 2007
Jean-Marie Guehenno says the mandate is broad
The head of United Nations peacekeeping operations says the UN mandate for Afghanistan must be sharpened up to help efforts to stabilise the country.

Jean-Marie Guehenno said that while the international community was committed and generous, it was insufficiently united on some key issues.

The UN Security Council is to renew the UN mandate in Afghanistan this month.

Mr Guehenno said more needed to be done to strengthen Afghanistan's government and tackle the massive trade in drugs.

The insurgency had been more resilient than expected, he said.

'Sufficiently broad'

Mr Guehenno urged the Security Council to take these factors into account when it renews the mandate.

"We feel that this mandate is still appropriate and is sufficiently broad to fulfil our objectives," he said.

"We do think, however, that in face of the evolved situation, the mandate needs to be sharpened."

The UN's mission in Afghanistan (Unama) was established in 2002 aimed at supporting the process of rebuilding and national reconciliation after the fall of the Taleban.

The mandate now ranges from political and strategic advice for the peace process to managing all UN humanitarian relief and development activities in co-ordination with the government.

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