Taliban foreign minister heads to Turkmenistan for discussions

Taliban foreign minister Amir Khan Muttaqi departed for Turkmenistan on Sunday for talks on issues of mutual interest, Taliban foreign ministry spokesperson Zia Ahmad said.

Muttaqi is joined by the Taliban’s minister of mines and petroleum, the chief of the railway authority, and the head of Da Afghanistan Breshna Sherkat, the Taliban-operated power distribution firm.

Ahmad noted that the visit follows an invitation from the President of Turkmenistan.

The trip coincides with Turkmenistan’s upcoming hosting of the fifth gathering of foreign ministers from Afghanistan’s neighboring countries.

During a visit to Ashgabat, Yue Xiaoyong, the Chinese special envoy for Afghanistan, met with Turkmenistan’s Deputy Foreign Minister Ahmet Kakabayevich Gurbanov. Yue stated that their talks centered on bolstering collaborative efforts in supporting Afghanistan’s reconstruction.

Xiaoyong also expressed China’s backing for Turkmenistan’s role as host of the fifth meeting of foreign ministers from Afghanistan’s neighboring countries in 2024.