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Russia ready to take steps for lifting UN sanctions on Taliban

Envoy for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov recalled that "this is the issue of a consensus between 15 members of the Security Council"

MOSCOW, February 12. /TASS/. Moscow believes that time is ripe for lifting the United Nations Security Council’s sanctions on the Taliban (terror group, outlawed in Russia), and is ready to contribute to their removal if its 15 member-states reach a consensus, Russian Presidential Special Envoy for Afghanistan, Director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Second Asia Department Zamir Kabulov told reporters on Tuesday.

"We are principally ready, but this is the issue of a consensus between 15 members of the Security Council, including five permanent members. If we reach an agreement, then yes, apparently time is ripe for this because by limiting the diplomatic maneuver of the Taliban movement’s representatives we won’t help promote national reconciliation," Kabulov said.

Sanctions against the Taliban were imposed by the UN Security Council in 1999 and have been toughened several times. In December 2015, Resolution 2255 was passed, tightening measures aimed at curbing the group’s financing. The UN restrictions also include freezing bank accounts belonging to the group’s members and related persons, a ban on trips abroad and also an arms embargo. Under the resolution, any persons and groups supporting the Taliban are blacklisted.