President Vladimir Putin of the Russian Federation ruled out the possible involvement of Taliban representatives in a future Afghan government. This was disclosed to reporters here today By Putin himself, after a tripartite conference involving leaders of the Russian Federation, Tajikistan and the Islamic state of Afghanistan wound up. It is our opinion that the Taliban movement has compromised itself, while cooperating with international terrorism, Putin stressed. In his words, the Russian policy aims to create a favourable situation in Afghanistan, so that the people of Afghanistan could independently determine their future, subsequently creating such a government and state that would maintain friendly relations with its neighbours, the Russian Federation included. The tripartite conference discussed various issues dealing with Afghanistan's future in great detail, Putin stressed. Putin also said he was satisfied with the Afghan side's intention to set up specific national structures that would create a situation of friendship and mutual understanding with all regional countries, also enabling Afghanistan to rely on wide-ranging international support. For his own part, President Emomali Rakhmonov of Tajikistan also noted that his country, as well as other states, opposed the involvement of the Taliban's representatives in a future Afghan government. President Burhanuddin Rabbani of the Islamic state of Afghanistan noted that the legitimate Afghan Government was ready to cooperate with only those specific forces, which haven't smeared their reputation, while dealing with terrorists. In his words, a situation enabling the people of Afghanistan to independently determine their future should be created after the Taliban's removal from the military and political scene. Today's conference is highly important and timely, Rabbani went on to say, also thanking the Governments of Russia and Tajikistan for backing the just liberation struggle of the people of Afghanistan.
Russian small missile ships - the Grad Sviyazhsk and the Great Ustyug - set off for a mission to the Mediterranean Sea
President Vladimir Putin has not released an official statement yet about his position on the issue of the pension reform in Russia