(Photo credit: West Observer)
A spokesman for the Russian presidency, Dmitry Peskov, said on 15 June that recognition of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) is not currently on the agenda of the Kremlin.
“It is not on the current agenda. We have said this many times. It is useless to make any forecasts,” Peskov said.
Despite this, the Russian special envoy to Afghanistan, Zamir Kabulov, told media earlier this week that recognizing the interim government led by the Taliban is not out of the question for Moscow.
“There is such a possibility. Its conditions are determined by both the Russian president and foreign minister,” Kabulov said.
On 6 April, the Afghan Chargé d’Affaires, Jamal Nasir Garwal, took office in Moscow, with Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova referring to it as a step towards the resumption of full bilateral relations between the two countries.
The interim Taliban-led government has so far failed to receive international recognition, with several countries including Russia, Iran, and China calling on the IEA to form an inclusive government in Afghanistan, and to allow girls to attend school.
Only a few hours after schools re-opened in Afghanistan on 23 March, Taliban officials ordered the closure of girls schools above the 6th grade.
The Taliban-run Bakhtar News Agency stated the closure was due to the need to redesign school uniforms that reflect Islamic values.
However, reports at the time indicated that, before the closure, the schools were already adhering to the Islamic code of gender separation, but Taliban officials deemed the adherence insufficient, closing the schools once again.
On 7 May, the Taliban issued a new law requiring face coverings for women in all public spaces and various punishments for non-compliance.
The Taliban stated that the rules require both hijab and face coverings, ideally with the traditional burqa outfit. They stipulated that those not following the rules would be subject to law enforcement proceedings of gradually increasing intensity.
During a press conference in Tehran with his Pakistani counterpart on 14 June, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said that Iran maintains ties with the interim governing body of Afghanistan simply because they share a common border.
Amir-Abdollahian highlighted the need for the Taliban to form an inclusive government with the participation of all ethnicities as the only solution to the crisis in Afghanistan.
Over recent months, Afghanistan has been mired in a humanitarian crisis as a result of a western economic blockade that has denied the country access to its foreign reserves.
UNICEF has reported that over a million Afghan children are at risk of acute malnutrition as a result of this crisis.