Russia, Tajikistan Discuss Measures to Counter Taliban Threats

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and his Tajik counterpart Sherali Mirzo on Saturday discussed joint measures to counter threats from the Taliban in the Tajikistan and Afghanistan border area, Russia’s TASS news agency reported.

Russia on Friday pledged to help its ally Tajikistan to build a new outpost on the border.

The two countries will also hold major drills next month.

“The parties discussed the situation in the Tajik-Afghan border area and joint measures to neutralise threats related to the escalating situation in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan,” Russian foreign ministry said as quoted vy TASS.

Russia operates a military base in Tajikistan, a former Soviet republic, whose government has expressed concern about the rapidly deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan.

Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, another Central Asian republic bordering Afghanistan, will hold joint military drills close to the Tajikistan and Afghanistan border next month, according to Reuters report.

Russia has sent military equipment to border areas between Tajikistan and Afghanistan to prevent possible threats originating from the country.

Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rahmon while addressing the Tajik army during a military exercise last week said that the situation in Afghanistan remains fragile, adding that his country is fully prepared to face the possible threats from Afghanistan.

The Tajik president called on the Afghan government, political parties and the political leaders to unite and prefer their national interests to their personal interests.

“In the view of current sensitive situation that dominate the region and the world, the security of our people and the Tajik government, peaceful political environment for our people and the government, is among our topmost priority,” Rahmon said.

He said the ongoing conflicts in Afghanistan have no military solution.