Former president Hamid Karzai has supported the military assistance of Russia to Pakistan, saying that Moscow can give weapons to Islamabad same as the United States is providing arms to Afghanistan’s neighboring country.
Addressing the Raisina Dialogue 2018 in India, Karzai said Moscow and Islamabad relations are new.
“There are ninety times more US weapons in Pakistan than Russian weapons in Pakistan,” Karzai said. “Shouldn’t we first correct the US part? Ninety percent… When they do that we will go to Russia and ask them to stop their will.”
The former president said the US has failed in Afghanistan war because it gives more importance to Pakistan compared with Afghanistan.
“When I pressed the US delegation on Pakistan and their support to Pakistan and the continuity of extremism arriving from there to Afghanistan, the trouble that it cost to Afghanistan and the US mission in Afghanistan, suddenly vice president (Joe) Biden got up from his place and said look Mr. Karzai, Pakistan is fifty times more important for us than you Afghanistan. That is the relationship that we should focus on,” Karzai said.
At the same event, Igor Morgulov deputy minister of foreign affairs of the Russian Federation, rejected Russia’s relations with the Taliban.
“How do you know this is Russian weaponry? I mean if it is AK, they are produced now almost everywhere. So, this no evidence again and we are speaking about those helicopters which bring foreign fighters to Afghanistan. We asked government in Kabul and we asked NATO commandment where these come from? Because we know that this is NATO and Afghan government who is controlling the air space of Afghanistan,” Morgulov said. “We have not yet received any substantial answer.”
The Russian diplomat said Russia does not have any influence over the Taliban.
“We are very much concerned with the situation in Afghanistan for many years and billions of dollars poured in this country and military efforts. We see no signs of the improving the situation. Moreover, the situation is becoming more and more dire and we are very much concerned. There are a lot of talk about possibility of Russia’s assistance to Taliban,” he said.
About Russia’s pledge to facilitate talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban, he said: “That is a principle difference. We are proposing to provide conditions and to provide venue if needed for dialogue between the government in Kabul and the Taliban but there is no evidence whatsoever with regards to Russia’s assistance to Taliban. These are pure speculations; absolutely groundless.”