MOSCOW (Sputnik) – A recent article by the New York Times newspaper on the alleged collusion between Russian and Afghanistan’s radical movement Taliban is unlikely to help build trust in Moscow-Washington relationship, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said.
“These are groundless conclusions of journalists that have already been refuted by the White House and the Pentagon,” Patrushev told Argumenty i Fakty newspaper.
According to Patrushev, the US has already introduced sanctions against Russia “based on fake news.”
“Now, their media got interested in Afghanistan, where until recently our countries had had a regular dialogue, which apparently did not sit well with some politicians,” Patrushev said. “Such an unfriendly step aimed against us is unlikely to help rebuild trust that Moscow and Washington itself have been talking about for years”.
The official stressed that Russia has never cooperated with the Taliban movement and any claims of Moscow’s collusion with them betray insufficient knowledge of the situation in Afghanistan or deliberate lies.
REUTERS / Parwiz Parwiz
The security council secretary remarked that the US was “there at the beginning of the Taliban.” Patrushev recalled the Central Intelligence Agency’s Operation Cyclone, which supported Afghan mujahideen, “who later became the main force of terrorist groups not only in Afghanistan but across the world.”
The NYT published an article in June claiming that Russian military intelligence was calling on the Taliban to attack the members of the International Coalition in Afghanistan for payment. Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov has refuted these claims.