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Russia to invite Taliban for international talks in Moscow on October 20

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An envoy said Russia would invite the Taliban.

Zamir Kabulov, the Kremlin’s envoy to Afghanistan, said on Thursday that Russia would invite the Taliban to an international dialogue on Afghanistan in Moscow on October 20.

Responding to a question from Russian journalists whether representatives of the radical group would be invited for talks involving China, India, Iran and Pakistan, Kabulov said: “Yes”.

The talks will follow the G20 summit on Afghanistan on October 12 which will help the country avoid humanitarian devastation in the wake of the Taliban takeover.

A top UN official warned on Wednesday that Kabulov was also asked whether Russia would provide aid to Afghanistan, where the humanitarian crisis continues to escalate.

Russia will do so, but the details are still being decided, Kabulov said.

“It is being worked on,” he told reporters, “cargo” was being collected.

Moscow has proceeded to associate with the Taliban, but has downplayed the recognition of the group, which is banned in Russia as a terrorist organization.

Kabulov said on Monday that Moscow would not “exclude” the amendment to UN sanctions against the Taliban.

“But at this stage we believe it is not expedient to rush,” he said.

The Kremlin has contacted the Taliban in recent years and hosted its representatives in Moscow several times, most recently in July.

Russia has kept its embassy in Kabul open, unlike Western countries that arrived to evacuate diplomats after the Taliban came to power in August.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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