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Afghan Government Faces 'Five Challenges To Survival'

Nicholas Haysom, the UN's special representative for Afghanistan (file photo)

The United Nation's special representative for Afghanistan has said the country’s national unity government faces five hurdles this year.

Nicholas Haysom told the UN Security Council on March 15 that the Kabul government must tackle a contracting economy with low growth and high unemployment, an intensifying Taliban insurgency, and "an increasingly fractious and divided political environment."

The government must also secure significant international financial support and make "progress toward a sustainable peace," Haysom also said.

If there was a serious failure in tackling any one of the challenges, "it would have severe political and other consequences throughout the country," he added.

Haysom also said that the UN will keep pressing for direct talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government.

The Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution during the meeting to extend the UN political mission in Afghanistan.

Based on reporting by AP