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Hekmatyar confirms Russian 'relationship' with Taliban

Salaam Times


Gulbuddin Hekmatyar gestures while speaking during a news conference in Kabul August 5. [Wakil Kohsar/AFP]

Gulbuddin Hekmatyar gestures while speaking during a news conference in Kabul August 5. [Wakil Kohsar/AFP]

KABUL -- Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, former militant commander and one-time Taliban ally, has confirmed that Russia supports the Taliban.

"There is a relationship between the Taliban and Moscow, and I understand and hear that Russia strongly supports the Taliban," Hekmatyar told Al Jazeera in an interview broadcast November 19.

Hekmatyar and his dormant Hezb-e-Islami militant group signed a peace deal with the Afghan government in September 2016.

"Two years ago ... there was much evidence of Iran's support for the Taliban, but Afghanistan's intelligence reports indicate that since 2014, Russians, alongside Iranians, also have built a relationship with the Taliban by providing weaponry and financial assistance to them," Muhammad Jaan Rasool, former deputy governor for Helmand Province, told Salaam Times.

Kremlin objectives

Russia supports the Taliban because it "wants to prevent the spread of war to its borders and countries under its influence," he said. "It wants to keep the ongoing war within Afghanistan."

"By supporting the Taliban, Moscow plans to make Afghanistan's situation more critical so the presence of the international community, especially the United States, comes under question," Zakaria Zakaria, a member of parliament representing Kabul, told Salaam Times.

"Moscow considers the presence of westerners in Afghanistan a danger to itself," he said. "Therefore, [Russians] want to support the Taliban, Haqqani Network, and even some other groups in Afghanistan not only to have control over Afghanistan but also to hurt westerners in the country."

[Sulaiman from Kabul contributed to this report.]

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Shakh breat | 01-13-2018

You are saying mess.

Ulo'gbig | 12-07-2017

Gulbuddin Rocketyar [Hekmatyar: Sarcasm Intended] is a slave of the West and is also an official in the government of Ashraf Ghani, the contemporary fortun-teller, who wants to once again drag the country into chaos... They have realized that the recent support of the Afghan government by the West has not been effective and that the people are gradually becoming interested in the East, more specifically the neighboring country of Russia. Through his empty and worthless rhetoric, this slave of the West wants to once again push our people towards his supporter, the U.S. I think, however, that people have become alert...

Nazifullah | 12-01-2017

Hekmatyar, you are a [religious] scholar, you are a Shiekh-ul-Hadith [specialist of the prophet's sayings]. What happened to you as you are speaking the way of Balam bin Baura [name of the chief of hypocrites during the era of prophet Muhammad]. What happened to the jihad in which you gave 2 million martyrs in fighting against Russians. The words that you said...