Russia, US to continue contacts on situation in Afghanistan, Kremlin says

The issue of Afghanistan requires an exchange of opinions and information between Russia and the US, and the mechanism of such contacts has been set, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Thursday.

"These contacts emerge as the need arises, but the mechanism of contacts has been established. Certainly, the situation requires an exchange of opinions and information, so, of course, with a great degree of probability, these contacts will surely continue," the Kremlin official said in response to a question on whether the high-level contacts between Moscow and Washington are planned on the subject of Afghanistan.

The spokesman reiterated that earlier this week Secretary of Russia’s Security Council Nikolai Patrushev held a phone conversation with US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan.

After the Biden administration had announced the end of Washington’s 20-year-long military operation in Afghanistan and the launch of its troop pullout, the Taliban (outlawed in Russia) embarked on an offensive against Afghan government forces.

On August 15, Taliban fighters swept into Kabul without encountering any resistance, and gained full control over the Afghan capital within a few hours. Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani said he had stepped down to prevent any bloodshed and subsequently fled the country. Vice President Amrullah Saleh announced that, in the absence of the head of state, the constitution empowered him to become the caretaker president and urged the Afghan people to join the resistance against the Taliban. The armed resistance in the country’s Panjshir Province is led by Ahmad Massoud, the son of renowned guerilla commander Ahmad Shah Massoud (1953-2001). (TASS)