Taliban hold talks with Russian, Chinese and Pakistani special envoys to Afghanistan

The Taliban (outlawed in Russia) and the special representatives of Russia, China and Pakistan to Afghanistan held talks in Moscow, Spokesperson for the Afghan Foreign Ministry Abdul Qahar Balkhi said on Wednesday.

"Following participation in Moscow Format talks, a senior Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the name the Taliban call themselves) delegation led by Deputy Prime Minister Mawlawi Abdul Salam Hanafi partook in a quadlateral meeting in which comprehensive discussions were held with special representatives of Russia, China and Pakistan," the spokesperson stated on his Twitter page.

According to the photo attached to the Twitter post, Russian presidential envoy to Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov, Pakistan's Special Representative for Afghanistan Mohammad Sidique Khan, Chinese Special Envoy for Afghanistan Yue Xiaoyong, as well as Russian Ambassador to this country Dmitry Zhirnov, took part at the meeting.

"The [three sides] agreed to continue engagement with the new Islamic government of Afghanistan and to jointly work towards unfreezing bank reserves of the Afghans. They expressed satisfaction with security situation in Afghanistan and appreciated efforts of the new Afghan government," Balkhi noted.

On Wednesday, Russia hosted the third Moscow format consultations on Afghanistan. The talks were established in 2017 on the basis of a six-party consultation mechanism of the special envoys of Russia, Afghanistan, India, Iran, China and Pakistan. Following the meeting, the Russian Foreign Ministry stated that the participants stressed the need to form an inclusive government in Afghanistan.

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