Express News Service
NEW DELHI: As the Taliban move closer to forming the government in Afghanistan, the Russian envoy to India has voiced support for a democratic and neutral government in Afghanistan. He hoped that India, too, would support such a government.
“Russia is very much committed to a peaceful, democratic and neutral Afghanistan. I believe that India could share these feelings. These feelings reflected in our bilateral cooperation in multiple formats like SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group,” said Russian Ambassador to India, Nikolay Kudashev, on Friday.
Ambassador Kudashev said India-Russia friendship is a much needed and almost guaranteed partnership for world peace. “India-Russia friendship is one more guarantee of peaceful and stable development of our countries, of the region and the world. The main feature of our privileged strategic partnership is the peaceful orientation.”
Before the Taliban seized control of Kabul on August 15, Russia had played a proactive role in the Afghan peace process and hosted the Taliban leaders in Russia. Also, the Russian Embassy in Kabul kept functioning during the tumultuous days.
On Friday, while speaking at the plenary session of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed hope that the Taliban would behave in a “civilised” manner in Afghanistan so that the global community can maintain diplomatic ties with Kabul. “The sooner the Taliban enters the family of civilised people, so to speak, the easier it will be to contact, communicate and somehow influence and ask questions,” Putin said.
The Russian Ambassador spoke to mediapersons on the sidelines of a commemorative event which he attended with the Vice Chief of the Indian Army, Lt Gen CP Mohanty to honour the Indian Red Star awardees late Havildar Gajendra Singh and late Subedar Narayan Rao Nikkam who were part of the Supply and Transport Company during World War II and contributed greatly to the Russian campaign, which the Russians refer to as the Great Patriotic War.