In light of the latest drone attacks the US has launched against alleged ISIS-K militants, Russia’s special presidential envoy for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov stressed in an interview on Rossiya-24 TV hat more US strikes against the territory of Afghanistan should not be ruled out.
Kabulov, director of the Foreign Ministry’s second Asian department, pointed that the United States and NATO heard but did not listen Russia’s repeated attempts to draw their attention to the threat coming from the Islamic State, first and foremost to Afghanistan itself and to the outside world.
At the same time, he underlined Moscow’s hopes that the weapons and military equipment that US troops left behind in Afghanistan after the withdrawal from the country or that was abandoned by Afghan forces will not be used in a potential civil war since it’s now in the hands of the Taliban.
Kabulov added it’s necessary to keep in mind the further fate of these weapons so it doesn’t reignite the civil war which has just ended in Afghanistan at the moment.
Virtually all of the equipment and weaponry worth $28 billion that Washington provided Afghan security forces with in between 2002 and 2017, have now fallen into the Taliban’s hands along with hundreds of military biometric devices that could help them track down and target former security officials and government supporters.
Kabulov also noted Moscow’s concerned about the security and human rights situation in Afghanistan, calling on the West not to freeze the financial assets of the new Afghan authorities that would create additional problems for the war-ravaged nation.
Kabulov pointed that Russia is ready to participate in projects devoted to restoring Afghanistan’s economy, adding that measures must be taken to keep the country’s national currency afloat since its collapse would lead to negative economic consequences.
In that context, he has called on the US to unfreeze Afghan central bank’s gold and foreign exchange reserves that Washington blocked earlier this month after the Taliban’s takeover of Kabul, underscoring that if this doesn’t happen, new Afghan authorities might turn to illegal opiates trafficking and selling the seized US weapons on the black market.