Russia, China and Iran defend collaboration with the Taliban

Thursday, October 21, 2021 | 9:51 am.

Russia, China and Iran began talks with the Taliban on Wednesday to guarantee the “stability” of the region, threatened by the activity of jihadist groups and the risk of a serious humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.

Representatives from Moscow, Beijing and Tehran expressed in a joint statement, which also includes Pakistan, their willingness to cooperate with the Taliban on security matters to “contribute to regional stability”, given the threat of latent “terrorist organizations” Afghanistan since the Taliban came to power in mid-August.

However, they demanded that the Afghan insurgents apply “moderate policies”, both at home and abroad and “policies favorable to Afghanistan’s neighboring countries and to work towards the goal of sustainable peace and security and prosperity. long-term, “the AFP news agency reported.

Although they called for the organization by the UN of “an international donor conference” to avoid a serious humanitarian crisis, Russia, China, Iran and Pakistan consider that the “weight” of economic reconstruction should fall on “the actors that they were in the country for the last 20 years, “referring to the invasion carried out by the United States in 2001 against its allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

“Any future engagement with Afghanistan requires taking into account the new reality, the coming to power of the Taliban,” the joint statement said.

Afghanistan faces a serious humanitarian crisis resulting from years of war and international sanctions that prevent the Taliban government from feeding the banks or paying salaries.

In addition, a security crisis with the increase in the presence and attacks of the jihadist group Islamic State-Khorasan, enemies of the Taliban.

Despite this meeting that the Taliban Minister of Information and Culture, Zabihullah Mujahid, considered positive for the “stature” of the Afghan government, Russian diplomacy insisted on its request for an “inclusive” government to be formed in Kabul, involving other political tendencies besides the insurgents.

The Kremlin emissary for Afghanistan, Zamir Kabulov, called on the Taliban to abide by their commitments regarding respect for human rights and political pluralism, with a view to eventual recognition by the international community.

“Recognition will only come if they begin to meet the majority of the international community’s expectations regarding human rights and representativeness,” Kabulov told a press conference.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov stressed at the beginning of the negotiations that “numerous terrorist groups, first of all the Islamic State and Al Qaeda, seek to take advantage” of the instability in Afghanistan.

“There is a real risk that terrorist activities and drug trafficking … will spill over into the territories of neighboring countries,” he added, referring to former Soviet republics such as Tajiistan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Turkmenistan, allies of Moscow.

However, this situation presents an opportunity to strengthen Russia’s position as a regional power in Central Asia.

“We recognize the efforts launched to stabilize the political and military situation,” Lavrov stressed.

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