Author`s name Lyuba Lulko

Turkey plans to reach an agreement with the Taliban* to threaten Russia

The Taliban* threatens Turkey, but they will find common language some day, and Turkey will have an opportunity to control and influence many countries, including the countries of the former Soviet Union, expert Yuri Knutov believes.

Taliban* threatens Turkey

On July 13, the Taliban* leadership released an official statement, which said that Turkey should leave Afghanistan following the Americans and their allies.

Key points of the Taliban statement:

  • Turkey violates the agreement approved by the UN in Doha, which Ankara signed.
  • Turkey violates certain direct agreements with the Taliban*.
  • If Turkey decides to continue the occupation, the Taliban* will oppose similarly to how they opposed NATO's 20-year occupation before.

The Taliban* leadership disclaimed responsibility for all consequences in advance should Turkey keep its forces in Afghanistan.

The statement was prompted by Ankara's desire to keep its military in Afghanistan to guard the international airport of Kabul.

"The decision of the Turkish administration is reckless because it violates the sovereignty of Afghanistan and its territorial integrity. We urge Turkish officials to reverse the decision as it causes damage to both countries," the Taliban* said in a statement.

Turkey will agree with the Taliban*

In a comment for Pravda. Ru, military historian Yuri Knutov noted that Turkey volunteered to control the airport at the request of the United States.

"Turkey is an Islamic state, and it is easier for it to negotiate with the Taliban* than for the Americans. Moreover, Turkey is a NATO member, and Washington has certain leverage over Ankara, given that there are US army bases in Turkey," the expert said.

According to Yuri Knutov, Turkey has serious chances to come to an agreement with the Taliban* through other radical Islamic structures and find a compromise agreement.

"Turkey supports radical movements in Syria, Libya, and used to support one in Egypt. We know that the former leadership of Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood* is a radical Islamic group that is quite close to Turkey's current leadership in terms of political views. Turkey has an opportunity to reach out to the Taliban* through other radical Islamic structures and find a compromise agreement," the expert told Pravda. Ru.

Afghanistan: All players are in the game

Washington said it would withdraw its troops from Afghanistan by the end of August, that is, before the agreed date with the Taliban — September 11. Ninety-five percent of the US contingent has already been withdrawn. Against this background, all the players, whose interests could be affected by the pull out of US troops and the successful offensive of the Taliban*, have become very active.

In addition to Turkey, Iran has joined in too and transferred army units to the border with Afghanistan and allowed Afghan border guards, who found themselves in a desperate situation, to cross into Iranian territory. Tajikistan did both of those moves as well. Even Turkmenistan, which does not have impressive military capabilities, readies to redeploy troops closer to the border.

According to Yuri Knutov, Washington, with its "provocative" withdrawal from Afghanistan, struck a blow on China, which was harbouring plans to build the Silk Road — a highway through Afghanistan and trained armed Afghan PMCs to guard this road. These plans have been buried now, the expert believes. However, China is not going to accept this failure.

Russia prepares for the worst-case scenario in Afghanistan

Yuri Knutov noted in an interview with Pravda. Ru that Afghanistan is of great geopolitical interest for Russia from the military-political and military-strategic point of view, as the country is located in the heart of Central Asia. In this regard, Turkey has an opportunity to move closer to the countries of the former Soviet Union, including Russia, in order to expand its influence.

"These are far-reaching plans, taking into account the fact that the Turkish leadership is trying to restore the Ottoman Empire. Central Asia is not the Ottoman Empire, of course, but Turkey already enjoys significant influence in the region, starting with Kazakhstan and other republics," said Yuri Knutov.

The expert does not exclude that ethnic Uzbeks and Tajiks may massively move from Afghanistan to the territory of their republics, which would require Russia to strengthen its military presence on the borders with Afghanistan.

That is why the Russian Federation is now conducting large-scale exercises on the border with Afghanistan to show its military strength, that Russia is prepared for any provocations from the Taliban*, as well as ISIS*," Yuri Knutov told Pravda. Ru

All of this is part of Washington's plan:

  • Nagorno-Karabakh,
  • Belarus,
  • HMS Defender provocation near the Crimea,
  • and now Afghanistan.

All of these are links of one chain, designed to aggravate the crisis," Yuri Knutov told Pravda. Ru.

* Terrorist organizations banned in the Russian Federation

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