Russia rejects US presence in Afghanistan after UN mandate expires
Updated: 2011-10-08 09:04
MOSCOW - Russia will not agree to US military presence in Afghanistan after the expiration of a UN Security Council mandate, Russian envoy to NATO Dmitry Rogozin said Friday.
Rogozin told Russian reporters said the United States is pursuing the same tactic in both Afghanistan and Libya by offering training for armed forces of those countries in NATO standards.
"This is only a pretext for preserving their military presence in those counties," Rogozin said.
"This is something we have never agreed with. Afghanistan should be free from foreign interference in its internal affairs, and therefore the coalition forces should only perform the duties mandated by the UN Security Council in 2001," he added.
Also on Friday, Deputy Foreign Minister Alexei Borodavkin said Moscow will insist on scaling down the US military presence in Central Asia after its counter-terrorism operation in Afghanistan is completed.
"The point is that when the counter-terrorism operation in Afghanistan is over, when American armed forces leave this country, and the need to send supplies to them becomes irrelevant, we will insist that the American military presence in Afghanistan and Central Asia must be scaled down," Borodavkin told a meeting of the Russian State Duma, or the lower house of the parliament.