Kabul miffed over Russian diplomat’s remarks

Afghanistan on Friday angrilyreacted to Russia’sSpecial Envoy Zamir Kabulov’s remarks in favourof a transitional coalition government in Kabul.

Earlier in the week, Kabulov claimed the Taliban had not breached their peace deal with the United States of America. The pact was signed last year in Doha.

In reaction, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) said Kaboluv’sremarks were not based on realities in Afghanistan and contrary in a certain context to official statements by the Russian Federation.

Unjustifiable exaggeration of group outlawed by Russia contradicted Moscow’s willingness to combat the threat of terrorism and extremism in the region, the ministry said in a statement.

Such remarks were not helpful for the two countries’ mutual interests, the statement said, adding the Afghan government — a UN member — enjoyed diplomatic relations with all countries, including Russia

The ministry agreed: “One cannot bracket such a government with a group that is seeking power through force and massacre of its own people.”

It also accused the Taliban of aiding terrorism, saying the Russian Federation had declared the Taliban, blacklisted by the UN, a terrorist group.

The Afghan government had never delayed peace talks, the ministry insisted, lashing out at the Taliban for refusing to return yothe negotiating table.

According to MoFA, the government freed more than 6,000 Taliban prisoners to pave the ground for the long-awaited intra-Afghan peace negotiations.

The ministry went on to reject the Russian diplomat’s statement regarding the Taliban controlling three-fourth of Afghanistan’s territory

“Conducting terrorist attacks and killing the innocent masses in different areas does not mean the insurgents are controlling those areas,” the ministry said.

On Kabulov’s call for a coalition government, the ministry outlined Kabul’s position — “our people have the right and ability to elect their leadership through elections and in accordance with the country’s constitution.”

The contradiction in Kabulov’s remarks was that from he called the Taliban a national group on the one hand and blamed Pakistan for sheltering the rebel movement on the other, the statement said.

“We reiterate that we value Russia’s role in regional mattersand seek continuation of cooperation between the two countries to ensure our mutual interests,” the ministry concluded.