- Title: Russia says it and others ready to mediate in Afghanistan
- Date: 24th August 2021
- Summary: BUDAPEST, HUNGARY (APRIL 24, 2021) (REUTERS) RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SERGEI LAVROV AND HIS HUNGARIAN COUNTERPART PETER SZIJJARTO AT A JOINT NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (RUSSIAN) RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER, SERGEI LAVROV, SAYING: "Now after all that has happened in Afghanistan and with the new reality on the ground, no matter how this reality is perceived, it must be taken into account. We were in contact with the leaders of foreign offices of the United States, the People's Republic of China, and Pakistan and we are all interested in continuing the work. Call it what you will, brokerage, cooperation to encourage Afghan people themselves to seek agreement among their people. This doesn't change anything. We remain committed to the task of establishing peace and stability on Afghanistan's territory so that it poses no threats to the region, threats of terrorism, threats of illegal drug trafficking." JOURNALISTS (SOUNDBITE) (RUSSIAN) RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTER, SERGEI LAVROV, SAYING: "Would Russia like to see American soldiers in Central Asia? No. This is the honest answer. First of all, there is the question of common security in the region, with all the obligations resulting from the collective security agreement. It requires that all parties agree on the issues of foreign troops' presence in their territories. This is a formal, legal, international law reason. But the main reason is that Americans, withdrawing from Afghanistan, wanted to place parts of their infrastructure, arms, and troops on the territory of the neighboring countries so that if needed, Afghanistan could be attacked from there if it behaves badly. That's what it is about. But if you think that any country in Central Asia or elsewhere is interested in becoming a target so that the Americans could fulfill their initiatives, I doubt it." JOURNALISTS LAVROV AND SZIJJARTO SHAKING HANDS, LEAVING
- Embargoed: 7th September 2021 16:20
- Keywords: Afghan refugees Afghanistan crisis Central Asia Foreign Minister Sergey lavrov Russia U.S. troops the former Soviet region
- Location: BUDAPEST, HUNGARY
- City: BUDAPEST, HUNGARY
- Country: Afghanistan
- Topics: Asia / Pacific
- Reuters ID: LVA001ERN4LDZ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Russia, China, the United States, and Pakistan are interested in serving as mediators in resolving the crisis in Afghanistan, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday (August 24).
"We remain committed to the task of establishing peace and stability on Afghanistan's territory so that it poses no threats to the region," Lavrov said.
Lavrov also said Russia opposed the idea of allowing Afghan refugees to enter Central Asia, the former Soviet region that lies between Russia and Afghanistan or having U.S. troops there.
"If you think that any country in Central Asia or elsewhere is interested in becoming a target so that the Americans could fulfill their initiatives, I really doubt anyone needs that," he told a briefing during a visit to Hungary.
Russia maintains close ties with Central Asia's former Soviet republics and regards the region as part of its sphere of interest.
(Production: Kriszta Fenyo, Anna Dabrowska)
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