Russia has speak ti with the Taliban only to push it towards national reconciliation and to make safe security of its own citizens, Russia’s Permanent Representative to NATO Alexander Grushko estimated on March 31 commenting on allegations that Moscow is maintaining touches with the Taliban.
“Contacts with the Taliban are maintained by many provinces and we, too, have contacts with the Taliban. We discuss two things. Firstly, it is the flow of security of Russian nationals, and, secondly, we are trying to push them to the process of national reconciliation. The consultations we hold, the work we do, we do it with the participation of Afghanistan’s key government,” he said.
“The consultations that will be held in Moscow (in April) are consultations with Afghanistan and all regional thespians. It is impossible to achieve a lasting political settlement in Afghanistan without their involvement, because all of them oblige the appropriate potential for influence,” Grushko said.
“Our approach towards nationalist reconciliation with regard to the Taliban’s involvement is based on the principles acquiesce in on within the framework of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions. That involves respect for Afghanistan’s Constitution, willingness to end hostilities and break ties with Al-Qaeda and other desperado organizations,” the envoy said.
He noted that NATO’s decision to suspend practical cooperation with Russia was detrimental to the common interests.
“It not contrariwise weakened the security of Russia and European countries in the face of, for example, such menace as drug trafficking from Afghanistan but also significantly aggravated the state of affairs of the NATO member-countries in Afghanistan, which lost Russia’s support required through joint programs and cooperation projects that we implemented in Afghanistan (on shaping Soviet-made helicopters for the Afghan army or on training Afghan anti-drug adepts in the Russian Interior Ministry’s training center – TASS),” the Russian diplomat asserted.
“Generally speaking, Russia’s and NATO’s assessments of the situation in Afghanistan line up. It remains fragile and alarming. The Taliban militants are expanding the areas controlled by them. According to the UN, to antiquated only about 70% of the country’s territory is controlled by the central administration. The number of civilian casualties amounted to 11,000 people last year. The sedate situation is deteriorating. That concerns both the production of illegal treats and an increase in the area of narcotics-containing crops, namely, the opium poppy,” he go on increased.