Russian President Vladimir Putin is calling for an end to “the irresponsible policy of imposing someone else’s values from the outside” in Afghanistan, amid the Western-backed government’s fall to the Taliban.
Many foreign policy experts have warned adversaries including Russia and China are likely to gain influence due to the chaos of the US exit and swift rise of the Taliban, with the United States losing access to intel gathering abilities in key areas of the region.
Putin said that the world needs to accept the “political reality” that the Taliban is in control to prevent “the collapse of the Afghan state,” CNN reports.
“It is necessary to stop the irresponsible policy of imposing someone else’s values from the outside, the desire to build democracy from outside according to other people’s patterns, without taking into account any historical, cultural or religious peculiarities. Completely ignoring the traditions by which other peoples live,” he said.
“We know Afghanistan well, we know how this country is organized and how counterproductive it is to try to impose unusual forms of government and social life on it. Any such social and political experiments have not yet been successful and only lead to the destruction of the state, the degradation of their political and social systems.”
He went on to state that the Taliban has announced it would end hostilities and start to establish “local residents, foreign diplomatic missions.”
Putin’s comments come as a swipe to the U.S., which spent 20 years in the country training the Afghan military and installing a Western-friendly government, for it to fall in just days to an Islamic fundamentalist regime known for harboring anti-Western terrorists.
He added that strides need to be taken to prevent the “penetration of terrorists … masked as refugees” into surrounding countries.
“In our opinion, it is especially important now to prevent the penetration of terrorists of all stripes into the territory of states adjacent to Afghanistan, including disguised as refugees,” he said.
Putin previously pushed back on the U.S. military playing a role in Central Asian countries during a June 16 summit meeting with President Biden ahead of the troop withdrawal, the Wall Street Journal first reported.
Putin’s objection signals efforts to derail the United States’ ability to respond to threats in the region and indicates plans to gain more control in the area.