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Russia expects Taliban govt. to deal with Daesh in Afghanistan on its own

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Taliban fighters walk inside the police headquarter in Qala-e-Now center, in Badghis Province, Afghanistan, on October 14, 2021. (Photo by AFP)

Russia has expressed concern about the activities of Daesh in Afghanistan and says it expects the Taliban to deal with the Takfiri terrorist group without external support.

“We hope that the new authorities in Kabul will deliver on their statements that they can cope with IS on their own, without any outside help,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday, using another abbreviation to refer to Daesh.

“Next week, we are expecting a representative delegation of the Taliban movement to visit Moscow to take part in the third Moscow format consultations on Afghanistan,” the Russian official said. The meeting will focus on consolidating international assistance for Afghanistan to “prevent a humanitarian crisis” in the wake of the Taliban takeover, Zakharova added.

On Wednesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin warned that battle-hardened terrorists from Iraq and Syria were “actively” entering Afghanistan. “The situation in Afghanistan is not easy,” Putin said during a video conference with security service chiefs of ex-Soviet states. “It is possible that terrorists may try to destabilize the situation in neighboring states.”

The talks in Moscow are scheduled for October 20, 2021. The Moscow format for Afghan peace was established in 2017 on the basis of a six-party consultation mechanism of the special envoys of Russia, Afghanistan, India, Iran, China, and Pakistan.

Moscow has hosted Taliban representatives several times in the recent years and seems cautiously optimistic about the new Taliban government in Kabul, even though the Taliban are designated a terrorist organization in Russia.

After the takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban in August, Russia held military drills with Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, which share a border with Afghanistan.

The Taliban, who have announced a caretaker government, are seeking international recognition, as well as financial assistance to avoid a humanitarian disaster.

An affiliate of the Daesh terrorist group is active in Afghanistan. It has carried out several deadly attacks in the country since the Taliban’s rise to power. A bomb attack by the terrorist group killed over 50 civilians in a Shia mosque in northern Afghanistan on October 8.

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