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Russia Ready to Establish Contacts with U.S. on Afghanistan

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Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov says Moscow is prepared to establish contacts with the United States on Afghanistan and this will be to the benefit of everyone, first of all the Afghan people.

According to Lavrov, Russia maintained some contacts on Afghanistan with the previous US administration but they were “sporadic” and lacked confidence.

Russia’s top diplomat said he is convinced that Russia and the US will establish “partner cooperation” taking into consideration that US President Donald Trump confirmed that the fight against the Islamic State terrorist group is a top priority in the international affairs.

“As soon as the structures are formed in Washington, which will deal with the war on terror and the Afghan issue in broader terms, both in the State Department, the White House and other bodies of the US administration, I’m sure that our contacts will be established,” Lavrov said.

“This will be to the benefit of everyone, including our Afghan friends,” he said.

In the meantime, Afghan Foreign Minister, Salahuddin Rabbani said that Afghanistan wanted deeper cooperation with Russia.

“We are in favor of further deepening of our bilateral relations” Rabbani said during the talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Moscow.

Rabbani added that there were a number of topics to be discussed, including the global challenges such as terrorism and drug trafficking as well as a number of bilateral cooperation matters.

“We are interested in increasing oil imports from Russia,” Rabbani noted.

The foreign minister also praised progress in technical-military cooperation with Russia.

Military-technical cooperation between Afghanistan and Russia is on the rise, Moscow provides Kabul with needed training and equipment in the fight against terrorism, Rabbani said.

“We were discussing progress in our technical-military cooperation. We thanked Russia for the training and equipping support as our forces need it to battle transnational terrorist organizations,” he said.

FM Rabbani also thanked Russia for condolences over the death of people along the Afghan-Pakistani border after three days of heavy snowfall caused a series of deadly avalanches Sunday.

“We agreed to increase cooperation at and through the multilateral platforms including the United Nations and other international organizations,” he added.

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