Moscow Format meeting on Afghanistan gets underway

The “Moscow Format” meeting commenced on Friday morning in the city of Kazan, Russia, as authorities and envoys from countries in the region convened to deliberate on the situation in Afghanistan.

Envoys from Russia, China, Pakistan, and Iran, along with Amir Khan Muttaqi, the acting minister of foreign affairs for the Taliban, have gathered for the meeting.

Addressing the Moscow Format meeting in Russia, the Taliban’s acting foreign minister mentioned “stable security, effective fight against drugs… and a self-reliant budget” as their key achievements over the past two years.

Muttaqi called on other countries to send their ambassadors to Kabul, “same as China did recently.” In his 11-minute speech, he made no mention of women’s rights and girls education.

Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in a message to the fifth Moscow Format meeting that “an inclusive government can be the basis for recognizing the Taliban.”

He said that Moscow hopes to complete the process of political reorganization of power in Kabul, and this is related to the possible removal of Taliban representatives from the United Nations Security Council sanctions list.

Lavrov said that Russia is worried about the “attempts of extra-regional actors to become more active in Afghanistan”.