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Russia Warns Against Growing Taliban Influence

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KABUL – Russian military intelligence agency GRU has warned the Taliban influence in Afghanistan may grow after international coalition forces pull out and the threat of terrorism and religious extremism could increase. GRU chief Lt. Gen. Igor Sergun said in Moscow the situation in Afghanistan posed a “serious challenge to international stability”.

“A diversified terrorist network, including suicide bomber training camps has already been established in the country and the Taliban has close links with foreign terrorist structures whose militants, having gained combat experience in Afghanistan, could be sent to other hot spots across the world,” he said. The situation could get even worse if those militants resume cooperation with Al Qaeda and use force to establish “a global caliphate” from Morocco to Malaysia, he said.

Nikolai Bordyuzha, general secretary of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, an intergovernmental military alliance headquartered in Moscow and consisting of former Soviet states, earlier warned that after the ISAF withdrawal from Afghanistan the situation in the part of the country near Russia’s southern borders will worsen. A zone of instability will emerge in regions bordering Afghanistan, and the influence of extremist groups will grow, as will the penetration of Islamist fundamentalist ideas in neighbouring states, Bordyuzha said. (PAN)

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