17 Apr 2018 15:11

CSTO working group to discuss rise of ISIL activity in Afghanistan at April 19 meeting

MOSCOW. April 17 (Interfax-AVN) - The working group on Afghanistan of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) will hold a series of meetings with experts on Thursday to discuss the situation in Afghanistan, in light of a recent upsurge in the activities of militants from Islamic State (ISIL, a terrorist organization banned in Russia) in the north of the country, CSTO spokesman Vladimir Zainetdinov said on Tuesday.

"On Thursday, the CSTO Secretariat will host another meeting of the working group on Afghanistan of the CSTO Council of Foreign Ministers. CSTO Deputy Secretary General Alymbai Sultanov and national coordinators for Afghanistan will attend it," Zainetdinov said.

The meeting participants will analyze the progress made in implementing the group's action plan in the first half of 2018 and will approve an action plan for the second half of the year, he said.

"A joint meeting of the working group on Afghanistan of the CSTO Council of Foreign Ministers and the working group of experts on the fight against terrorism and extremism of the CSTO Committee of Security Council Secretaries is expected to be held on the same day. CSTO Secretary General Yury Khachaturov will be present," he said.

Representatives of the Monitoring Group of the UN Security Council's Committees for sanctions on the Taliban and Al-Qaeda and ISIL (banned in Russia) have also been invited to the meeting.

"The participants in the joint meeting are expected to discuss issues concerning the military-political situation in Afghanistan, measures taken by the CSTO to minimize CSTO member states' security threats coming from the territory of Afghanistan, including in light of the intensification of ISIL's activities in its northern provinces, and also the implementation of relevant decisions adopted by CSTO agencies," he said.

The CSTO includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Tajikistan.