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Donors Conference Aims To Raise Billions Of Dollars For Afghanistan

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani (L), EU foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini (C) and Afghan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah arrive for a meeting on Afghanistan at the EU Headquarters in Brussels on October 5.

Afghanistan's leaders and officials from more than 70 states are gathering in Brussels on October 5, seeking to raise billions of dollars in funding for the conflict-ridden country.

President Ashraf Ghani will represent Afghanistan at the event hosted by the European Union.

The meeting is expected to drum up pledges worth at least $3 billion annually over the next four years to keep the country running.

In return, Kabul will be asked to tackle corruption, waste, political reforms, and human rights.

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said the European Union will pledge 1.2 billion euros ($1.3 billion).

She also denied reports that the 28-nation bloc is making aid conditional on Afghanistan taking back migrants who have fled to Europe.

Fifteen years after the start of the U.S.-led invasion that toppled the Taliban, Afghanistan remains one of the world's poorest and politically unstable countries.

In 2012, the international community agreed to provide 4 billion euros ($4.5 billion) a year in funding until the end of 2016.

The United States and the EU currently each provide about a third of all international aid to Afghanistan, with Japan the next largest donor.

Based on reporting by dpa, AFP, Reuters, and AP