Putin, Tokayev discuss situation in Afghanistan, focus on security

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev in Moscow, Russia, August 21, 2021. / Reuters

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev in Moscow, Russia, August 21, 2021. / Reuters

Russian President Vladimir Putin met his Kazakh counterpart Kassym-Jomart Tokayev in Moscow on Saturday, saying one of the most pressing issues is security, especially in light of events unfolding in Afghanistan, according to the Kremlin.

Leaders of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) will meet next Monday by video conference to discuss developments in Afghanistan, Putin added at the meeting.

The CSTO is a Russian-led military alliance established in 1992, bringing together the six former Soviet republics of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan, with the aim of safeguarding peace and stability in Eurasia.

Russian Ambassador to Afghanistan Dmitri Zhirnov said the Russian Embassy continues to operate normally. Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev in an interview with Izvestia newspaper stressed the need to resolve the situation in the country through peaceful dialogue, Tass reported.

The Kazakh Foreign Ministry, in turn, said Kazakhstan called for the establishment of an inclusive government in Afghanistan, respect for the rights of ethnic minorities and women, and respect for international law.

Putin and Tokayev last met in person in Moscow in June 2020. They have had more than ten phone conversations since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

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