Pakistan, Russia to ‘coordinate’ positions on Afghanistan

Pakistan, Russia to ‘coordinate’ positions on Afghanistan

Pakistani PM Imran Khan and Russia’s Vladimir Putin hold talks ‘focused on the need for peace and stability’ in Afghanistan.

The leaders of Pakistan and Russia have held telephone conversations to “coordinate” their position on the situation in Afghanistan, statements from both governments say, ahead of a summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) later this week.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan spoke on Tuesday, the statements said.
“While exchanging views on the situation in Afghanistan, both parties voiced their interest in coordinating both countries’ approaches for the sake of stabilising it,” read a brief Russian statement.

“Close coordination and consultations between Pakistan and Russia on the evolving situation in Afghanistan were of crucial importance,” according to a Pakistani statement on the meeting.

Khan’s remarks during the meeting, which centered on the need for peace and stability in Afghanistan and what Pakistan expected from the international community in this regard, were expanded upon in that statement.
“Prime Minister Imran Khan underlined the need for the international community to remain engaged in Afghanistan,” read the Pakistani statement.

“He stressed that the Afghan people should not be abandoned at this crucial juncture.”

Khan also demanded that humanitarian aid be sent to Afghanistan immediately and that measures be taken to avoid an economic crisis.

Since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan last month, worldwide donors have given more than $1 billion in humanitarian help to fight hunger and poverty.

The World Food Programme has warned that if immediate relief is not supplied, more than 14 million Afghans might face hunger.
The US Federal Reserve, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, meanwhile, have continued a freeze on Afghan assets, a measure put in place after the Taliban seized power from the elected Afghan government in August.

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