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Putin says Tajikistan’s concerns about situation in Afghanistan justified

Russian President pointed out that Russia was fortifying its military base in Tajikistan along with Tajikistan’s Armed Forces

MOSCOW, May 8. /TASS/. The situation in Afghanistan gives rise to well-founded concerns in neighboring Tajikistan, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with his Tajik counterpart Emomali Rahmon in Moscow on Saturday.

"Security issues are crucial in the region because of the ongoing developments in Afghanistan," the Russian leader said, pointing out that Tajikistan has the longest border with Afghanistan.

"I know that you are worried about the situation. It goes without saying that this is a justified concern," Putin said adding he would like to listen to Rahmon’s opinion during the meeting.

The Russian president emphasized that Moscow was doing its utmost to back Dushanbe in this area. He recalled that the 201st Russian military base was stationed in Tajikistan.

"We are working on its strengthening and on the consolidation of the Tajik Armed Forces. We have teamed up in this field. We have a program scheduled for several years and we will be doing our best to implement it in due time," he concluded.

On April 14, US President Joe Biden announced a decision to end the US combat operation in Afghanistan. It is the longest military campaign in the US history, since it started in October 2001. The Pentagon began withdrawing US troops last week and plans to complete the exit by September 11.