The Russian General staff called on SCO countries to join forces against threats from Afghanistan

MOSCOW, October 8. All the countries of the Shanghai cooperation organization (SCO) need to combine efforts and prevent the use of Afghanistan as a tool for the “swing” of the situation in Central Asia, said on Thursday Deputy head of the Russian General staff Sergei Istratov at the international conference on Afghanistan.

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“The emerging military-political situation and forecast of its development in the Central Asian region shows that consolidation of efforts of countries-members of SCO in the parry and neutralize challenges and threats to regional security emanating from Afghanistan. Therefore, the potential of the Shanghai cooperation organization could not be more timely and demanded”, – said Istratov.

He noted that today the SCO countries themselves try to neutralize threats to regional security, “conducting unilateral measures of economic, political and humanitarian character”. “Such attempts do not allow to effectively counter new challenges and threats”, – said the Deputy head of the General staff.

As an example, Istratov led the settlement of the Syrian crisis, which showed that the efforts of Western anti-terrorist coalition, not producing results in the fight against Islamic state, “since the goals of different coalition members, the efforts of the multi-directional, and all activity is reduced to the demonstration of active struggle”.

On the situation in Afghanistan

Chief of the Russian General staff army General Valery Gerasimov said during the opening of the international conference on Afghanistan that the number of militants in Afghanistan is up to 50 thousand people, United in more than 4 thousands of units and groups of different directions.

“Now in Afghanistan there are up to 50 thousand members United in more than 4 thousands of units and groups of various kinds. Their basis is the Islamic movement of Taliban numbering about 40 thousand militants”, – said Gerasimov.

According to him, the number of militants “Islamic state” in Afghanistan is growing, it has already reached 2-3 thousand people. The General noted that the terrorists take control of new regions. “As a result of subversive and terrorist activities of radical extremists, the death toll of Afghan civilians this year has increased by 25% and reached more than 3,5 thousand people. About 7 thousand were injured,” – said Gerasimov.

The active opposition of extremists, government troops does not allow an official to Kabul to solve the problem of the stabilization of the political and socio-economic situation in the country, leads to unnecessary casualties and continuous growth in the number of refugees in neighbouring countries, and through them to Europe, said Gerasimov.