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Moscow Says Ready to Cooperate with US on Afghanistan

Moscow Says Ready to Cooperate with US on Afghanistan

Saturday, 23 December, 2017 - 12:45
Afghan police soldiers inspect the site of a bomb attack, in Herat, Afghanistan, AP file photo

Moscow stands ready to cooperate with the United States on Afghanistan, Russia's Foreign Ministry official said in an interview with RIA state news agency published on Saturday.

Russia maintains contacts with US acting Assistant Secretary of State Alice Wells, said Zamir Kabulov, special representative to the Russian president on Afghanistan and the head of Asian region department at the Foreign Ministry.

Afghan security forces struggle to beat back the Taliban, which has been on the offensive since the withdrawal of US-led NATO combat troops at the end of 2014 and maintains control over swathes of the country.

Meanwhile, a powerful Afghan provincial governor dismissed on Saturday an announcement by the presidential palace that his resignation has been accepted.

Atta Mohammad Noor, governor of northern Balkh province, dismissed the order, saying no one in the National Unity Government has the right to remove him from his position unless his party, Jamiat-e Islami, makes that decision.

There was no immediate reaction from the presidential palace.

In an address Saturday broadcast live on local TV, Noor said his party made a mistake in backing the country's chief executive, Abdullah Abdullah during the past election. Noor once supported Abdullah Abdullah.

Last week, the palace announced that President Ashraf Ghani had accepted Noor's resignation, but Noor said that so far their negotiations have not come to a conclusion.

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