Russia 'Keeps Powder Dry' in Connection With Situation in Afghanistan, Lavrov Says
SOCHI/MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Russia now sees no reason to believe that the situation in Afghanistan will "spill over" to neighboring countries, but "keeps the powder dry," Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said.
"We heard ... that they [the Taliban*] have no [ill] intentions, they will not create problems for their neighbors, including the countries of Central Asia, they have no plans to invade their territory," the minister said at the All Russia-2021 forum of modern journalism.
According to the stateman, Russia is working with Central Asian countries with respect to Afghanistan.
"But now we have no reason to see a real threat of these turbulent events spilling over into the territory of our allies. We are doing everything to be ready for such a situation," Lavrov said, adding that Russia "is keeping the powder dry."
Moscow had no intention of sending a delegation to Afghanistan for the inauguration of the Taliban's interim government, Lavrov added.
"We never intended, I will tell you frankly, to recommend to our leadership to be represented there at the inauguration by a delegation from Moscow," the minister said.
Moscow considers an ambassador a "good enough level" for the country's representation at the inauguration. The Russian embassy in Kabul is still operating, providing "very useful information," Lavrov added.
On Wednesday, a Taliban source told Sputnik that the movement invited Russia, China, Qatar, Turkey, Pakistan and Iran for the inauguration ceremony of the Afghan interim government headed by Mullah Hasan Akhund, a close ally of the Islamist militant group's founder, Mullah Omar. A day later, however, the Taliban officially said the ceremony had been canceled several days ago.
*A terrorist organization banned in Russia
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