On Friday, June 27, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Russia is open for the renewed anti-terrorism cooperation with the United States, but added the ball is now in the US’ court.
“We had quite an effective bilateral mechanism with the Americans, which combined various departments that were employed in the fight against terrorism. Last year that mechanism was frozen by our American colleagues and now we clearly sense their interest to renew close cooperation in anti-terrorism. We are ready for that, it’s up to our American colleagues,” Lavrov said.
Last year, in early april, NATO foreign ministers announced their decision to suspend all contact with Russia following a split over the crisis in Ukraine. Now it is feared the freeze may undo the nations’ anti-terror efforts in turbulent Middle Eastern countries such as Afghanistan.
“Because NATO decided to curtail cooperation with Russia, this will unfortunately directly impact the combat efficiency of the Afghan Army,” Russia’s Afghan ambassador Andrei Avetisyan told reporters earlier in the day.
A similar warning came earlier from NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who said he hoped the suspension would not affect Russia’s participation in joint international projects in Afghanistan, including training anti-drug officials in the country.
Author: Julia Alieva