Moscow: – A few days ago, Russia’s foreign minister accused that the irresponsible military withdrawal of the United States was responsible for the growing number of Taliban attacks in Afghanistan. This reaffirmed the differences between the United States and Russia over Afghanistan. But Russia has reportedly offered to cooperate with the United States on the very issue of Afghanistan. A Russian newspaper claims that Russia has offered the United States military bases in Central Asia to keep an eye on the Taliban.
Last week, important meetings were held in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, and Tashkent, Uzbekistan, on the Afghan issue. Russia’s leading newspaper, Kommersant, reported the Russian stance against the United States in both meetings. At the meeting, Russia had slammed the United States over Afghanistan. The newspaper also reported that Russia had criticised that the instability in Afghanistan will have its effects even on the Central Asian countries.
But the newspaper claimed that Russia, which has been critical of the United States, had made a separate proposal to the United States on Afghanistan a month ago. A special meeting between US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin was held in Geneva on June 16. At the meeting, Russian President Vladimir Putin suggested that the United States use Russia’s military bases in Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan, in Central Asia, according to a report by Kommersant.
The newspaper claimed that Russian President Vladimir Putin had proposed to US President Joe Biden that Russia and the United States launch a joint operation in Afghanistan. The Russian government has not commented on the report. But the newspaper has said that Russia has suggested that the United States deploy drones to the military bases to monitor the Taliban’s movements in Afghanistan and provide them with the information.
The Biden administration would have accepted the Russian president’s offer if it had only to keep an eye on the Taliban. But Kommersant said that the US policy on Afghanistan is not limited to that. The newspaper claimed that the United States has not yet responded to the Russian president’s proposal for the same reason. Earlier this month, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with Tajik Foreign Minister Sirojiddin Muhriddin Aslov and Uzbek Foreign Minister Abdulaziz Kamilov. Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov also met the foreign ministers of all five Central Asian allies in the last week. The visit underlined the importance of stability and peace in Afghanistan. However, the daily said, no decision has been made based on Russia’s offer to the United States.
Meanwhile, 6,000 Russian troops are stationed at the base in Tajikistan, which borders Afghanistan. Russian troops are also stationed at a base in Kyrgyzstan, 500 miles from the Afghan border. Russia is fully aware that the developments in Afghanistan will affect the security of the Central Asian countries and, in turn, Russia. That is the reason Russia is observing the situation in Afghanistan.
A Pakistani journalist expressed a concern, ‘If the US and Russia, who consider each other as enemies, are cooperating on the issue of Afghanistan, it is a matter of concern for Pakistan.’