MOSCOW, July 22. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed the situation in Afghanistan during a telephone talk with his Tajik counterpart Emomali Rahmon, the Kremlin’s press office reported on Thursday.
"The sides discussed the essential issues of the bilateral agenda, the developments in Afghanistan and the course of preparations for the upcoming summit of the SCO [the Shanghai Cooperation Organization] and session of the CSTO [Collective Security Treaty Organization] Collective Security Council in the city of Dushanbe in autumn," the statement says.
The talk was held at the initiative of the Tajik side, the Kremlin press office specified.
The last time both leaders held a telephone talk was on July 5 to discuss the situation on the Tajik-Afghan border. During that phone call, Putin reiterated his readiness to provide the necessary support to Tajikistan both on a bilateral basis and within the CSTO.
Clashes between the Afghan government troops and the Taliban radical militant group (outlawed in Russia) intensified after US President Joe Biden announced a decision on April 14 to wrap up the operation in Afghanistan that had been the longest overseas military campaign in the US history.
As the Pentagon announced on July 13, the United States pulled out more than 95% of its troops from Afghanistan. Meanwhile, the Taliban movement has claimed it has gained control of almost 85% of the republic’s territory, including the border regions with five countries - Iran, China, Pakistan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan.
SCO and CSTO
The SCO’s September summit will be a jubilee event as in 2021 the Shanghai Cooperation Organization will mark 20 years since its foundation. As Special Russian Presidential Representative for the SCO and the Foreign Ministry’s Ambassador at Large Bakhtiyer Khakimov earlier told TASS, the organization is preparing a substantial package of documents for signing, and the Dushanbe declaration of the SCO’s 20th anniversary will be its major item.
Next year, the Collective Security Treaty Organization will also celebrate its 20th anniversary. On May 19, the participants in the CSTO Foreign Ministers’ Council approved a draft plan of measures devoted to the bloc’s 20th anniversary, as well as draft documents, some of which will be submitted to the session of the CSTO Collective Security Council scheduled for the fourth quarter of this year in Dushanbe.
The documents include an agreement on the issues of jurisdiction and legal assistance in the matters related to the temporary deployment of collective security forces and capabilities on the territories of the CSTO member states, and a plan of measures devoted to the 30th anniversary of the signing of the Collective Security Treaty and the bloc’s 20th anniversary.