TASHKENT, August 17. /TASS/. Uzbekistan is in close contact with the Taliban (outlawed in Russia) on border protection issues, the Uzbek Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.
"Uzbekistan is in close contact with members of the Taliban movement on issues related to border protection and efforts to preserve calm in border areas," the statement reads. "We also firmly declare that attempts to violate the state border will be met with a tough response," the ministry vowed.
The Uzbek Foreign Ministry pointed out that the country’s diplomatic missions in the Afghan capital of Kabul and the city of Mazar-i-Sharif continued to operate normally.
The ministry also emphasized that Uzbekistan was closely monitoring developments in Afghanistan and was hopeful that the transition of power would be peaceful, based on a general consensus and on universally recognized international law.
Uzbekistan’s Foreign Ministry added that Tashkent was ready to maintain friendly and good-neighborly relations with Afghanistan and reaffirmed the country’s commitment to non-interference in the domestic affairs of the neighboring country.