By Faridullah Hussainkhail
The Russian embassy in Kabul on Tuesday rejected allegations that Moscow was funding Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan, stating the claims were unsubstantiated.
This comes after Kandahar police chief general Abdul Raziq said last week that certain countries in the region were keeping the Taliban’s war machine operational as they believe conflict in Afghanistan protects their interests.
He said countries such as Pakistan, Russia and Iran are funding and equipping the Taliban and other insurgent groups in order to fuel the war machine and pursue their own objectives.
Raziq said some countries in the region have a vested interest in the conflict in Afghanistan.
He claimed that there is sufficient evidence to show that Pakistan, Russia and Iran are funding the Taliban and other militant groups in the country.
“The Russians have been in contact with the Taliban militants since 2004 or 2005. It is not correct to say that they (Russians) engaged in ties with the Taliban in recent times (only), but now these relations have been clarified. Pakistanis, Iranians and the Russians are jointly supporting the terrorists, however the Russians do their work through Iran, for instance sending the Taliban weapons and money,” said Raziq.
U.S director of defense intelligence Lieutenant General Vincent R. Stewart said this week in Congress that despite signs of Russia's support for the Taliban, U.S officials have not found physical evidence to back these claims.
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