Foreign Ministry explains why Moscow is in contact with the Taliban

14 July

Moscow communicates with the Taliban due to the need to inform them of its position on the situation in the region, said Zamir Kabulov, Russian President's Special Representative for Afghanistan and Director of the Second Asian Department of the Foreign Ministry, in an interview with RIA Novosti.

Representatives of the movement visited Russia on July 8-9.

According to Kabulov, Moscow warned several years ago that the situation in the republic would worsen amid the withdrawal of US troops.

"If we call things by their proper names, we foresaw it much earlier, and that is why we started establishing contacts with the Taliban movement seven years ago... Let's not forget that we're talking about tactical actions now. But let's go back to the big, strategic outcomes of events in Afghanistan. Until a few years ago, there was a network of American military bases there and most of them had nothing strategic to do with Afghanistan, they projected power to the whole region, including us, Central Asia, Iran, Pakistan and China. Where are those bases? They are gone, that says it all," said Kabulov.

The agency's interlocutor added that if Moscow had not begun establishing contacts with the Taliban at that time, it would be difficult to conduct dialogue now.

"Now imagine that if we had not started to build bridges with the Taliban seven years ago, to communicate, to convey our concerns, our interests to them, and we would have gone along with the failed Westerners and branded them, who would we be talking to now? They have problems, but Russia can talk to any of the forces in Afghanistan," the diplomat concluded.

In 2020, the US and representatives of the Taliban (banned in Russia) signed the first peace agreement in 18 years of war, under which the US military must leave Afghanistan. The White House promised to complete the withdrawal of the contingent by September 11. At the same time, there are growing tensions in the republic: the Taliban have occupied large territories and launched attacks on major cities, they are opposed by government forces.



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Based on materials from RIA Novosti