Source Pravda.Ru

SERGEI IVANOV BELIEVES THAT DESTRUCTION OF TALIBAN'S MAIN MILITARY STRUCTURE DOES NOT MEAN THAT TALIBAN AND ESPECIALLY AL-QAEDA HAVE BEEN DESTROYED

The destruction of the main military structure of the Taliban does not mean that the Taliban movement and especially the Al-Qaeda terrorist organisation have been destroyed. As the RIA Novosti correspondent reports, Minister of Defence of Russia Sergei Ivanov stated this in Brussels on December 17 after the meeting with his US counterpart Donald Rumsfeld. According to Ivanov, it is still a long way to destruction of the Taliban movement and Al-Qaeda. He noted that the Russian side knows this well on the example of the developments in Chechnya. The main large bandit formations there have long been destroyed, and the Russian armed forces are already not taking any active actions but, this notwithstanding, separate terrorist cells, separate mercenaries remain", the head of the Russian military agency said. " Capture or destruction of them remain the priority task". At the same time, in Ivanov's opinion, "a moment when, parallel with the continuation of actions to search for or destroy terrorists who have come from very different countries of the world, it is necessary to gradually switch over to revival of a peaceful civil life" has come in Afghanistan. The Minister believes that without this Afghanistan will never stand on its own feet. The statement by the head of the Russian military agency was a follow-up of Donald Rumsfeld's utterances to the effect that in Afghanistan everything is going on according to the plan, the main military force of the Taliban has been destroyed there. The US Defense Secretary expressed satisfaction with the course of developments but noted that not everything has been finished yet, there is still what to do. He also said that he has no answer to the question where the leaders of the Taliban movement and of Al-Qaeda are. Answering the remark that he was allegedly the main opponent of rapid restructuring of NATO's relations with Russia, Rumsfeld advised not to believe everything that is written in the press. As he said, precisely he proposed a few directions in which Russia and NATO could successfully develop their new relations.

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