Putin seeks to remove Taliban from terrorist list

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Canan Kevser
22 October 2021, 10:31
Canan Kevser
22 October 2021, 10:31

Russian President Vladimir Putin says Moscow is considering removing the Taliban from its list of extremist organizations.

His statements came during a meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club on October 21, a day after Russia hosted a high-level Taliban delegation for talks attended by officials from China, Pakistan, and eight other countries.

Putin also commended U.S. President Joe Biden, saying his decision to withdraw American troops from Afghanistan was right.

The Russian President alleged that Afghanistan should "receive economic support and get its financial assets unfroze."

Washington has said it has "no intention of releasing nearly $9 billion in Afghan central-bank reserves held in the United States" that it froze after the Taliban seized power.

Moscow has hosted Taliban representatives several times in recent years, but has stopped short of recognizing the group, which it considers a terrorist organization.

Russian Foreign Minister hosted Taliban authorities in Moscow

Representatives of 10 countries and the Taliban gathered in the Russian capital on Wednesday, October 20, to discuss recent developments and the future of Afghanistan.

The meeting was participated by representatives from Russia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Iran, Pakistan, China, Turkmenistan, India, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

Background

The rightful President of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani, had left the country de facto to Taliban, fearing the possibility of internal conflict. The Taliban have been carrying out terrorist attacks and massacres in the region since the early 1990s to bring "sharia" laws in Afghanistan, with foreign support.

The US presence in Afghanistan, which started on October 7, 2001, ended after 20 years with the completion of the withdrawal of its troops from Afghanistan on August 31, 2021. The United States withdrew from the country after an agreement with the Taliban.