Putin says he's worried that Afghan 'militants' might try to enter Russia 'under cover of refugees'

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a joint press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel (not shown). This was after their bilateral meeting at Moscow's Grand Kremlin Palace, August 20, 2021. Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images
Putin criticised the US and Europe for placing Afghan refugees in Central Asian countries during processing of their visas.

Putin stated that he was worried about Afghan "militants" arriving in Russia under the cover of refugees.

This month, it was reported that the US had been in discussions with other countries to temporarily house Afghan refugees.

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Vladimir Putin, the Russian President, stated Sunday that he was worried about Afghan "militants", who pose as refugees and try to enter Russia from Central Asian countries.

According to Reuters, Putin stated that he does not want Afghan "militants" appearing in Russia again as refugees.

Putin criticised the United States for asking Central Asian nations, including Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzkistan - temporarily to house up to 9000 Afghans fleeing Kabul. This is especially since Russia does not have visa restrictions with certain of these countries.

"We have common borders but visa restrictions are not enforced. Imagine refugees entering any one of these countries. Who are these refugees? According to TASS, Putin stated: "How do we know?"

He described the Western approach to placing Afghan refugees in Central Asian countries temporarily while they process their visas as "humiliating."

According to Russian news agency TASS: "They think that they can send them to our neighbors [Central Asian nations], but refuse to accept them in their own country without visas."

According to Reuters, it was reported that the US had secretly met with countries to temporarily host Afghan refugees working for the US government earlier in the month.

According to Bloomberg, the Biden administration asked three Central Asia countries, Uzkistan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan, to temporarily house up to 9,000 Afghans at-risk who had worked for the US as soon as July.

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Russia seems to be blind to Kabul's chaos.

According to Reuters, Dmitry Zhirno, Russia's ambassador in Afghanistan, stated that the situation was peaceful and good and that everything had calmed down in the capital. This statement was made Monday by Ekho Moskvy, a Moscow news station, a day after Taliban took control.

Kabul's airport has seen violence and chaos since the Taliban took over Kabul one week ago. Reports also suggest that Taliban members blindfolded a Afghan police chief and set fire to a woman for "bad cooking."

Russia has been pragmatic and calculated in its approach to the Taliban over the past week. The BBC reported that Russia has met with Taliban leaders within 48 hours after its takeover. However, it has not yet recognised the Taliban as the government of Afghanistan.

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