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Russia backs Afghanistan’s principles on work of Taliban office in Doha

June 21, 2013, 12:28 UTC+3

Peace talks on the inter-Afghan settlement due to take place in Doha on June 20 have been postponed

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UNITED NATIONS ORGANISATION, June 21 (Itar-Tass) - Russia upholds Afghanistan’s approaches towards the work of the Taliban office in Doha, Russian deputy permanent representative to the U.N. Alexander Pankin said.

Speaking at the U.N. Security Council’s session devoted to Afghanistan, Pankin said peace talks would be successful if the Afghan authorities took an active part in them.

“The dialogue with the armed opposition can have a positive impact only if Kabul plays a leading role in it,” the diplomat said.

He stressed that Russia “supports the efforts by the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to promote national reconciliation and create conditions for lasting stability, including through talks between the High Peace Council and the armed opposition”.

“The priority is to comply with the key principles of reconciliation by militants - to surrender arms, to recognise the Constitution of Afghanistan and break relations with Al Qaeda and other terrorist organisations,” Pankin pointed out.

Peace talks on the inter-Afghan settlement due to take place in Doha on June 20 have been postponed.

Earlier, Afghan President Hamid Karzai said the government would not join the peace talks “until the process is managed by the Afghans themselves”.

He stressed that the dialogue is impossible until “only the Afghan parties take part in it and until violence is ceased”.

“We support the Afghan authorities’ approaches towards the principles of the work of the Taliban office in Doha,” Pankin said.

The opening of the Taliban political office was welcomed by the United States and Britain saying their goal was to ease contacts between Afghanistan and the opposition, which gave up relationship with Al Qaeda.

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