How Tajikistan became the hub of Afghanistan’s resistance

As the international community argued over whether to approve Kabul’s new Taliban regime, one country quickly revealed where it was. Neighboring Tajikistan has emerged as a government voice critic and a hub of Afghanistan’s resistance.

Ahmad Shah Massoud, the son of Afghanistan’s National Resistance Front leader and Soviet-era resistance leader Ahmad Shah Massoud, former Vice President and self-declared Acting President Amurula Surrey, and the National Assembly Party All of Abdul Latif Pedrum Afghanistan, the leader of Afghanistan, is protected in Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan.

Afghan neighbors in Central Asia fear that the Taliban takeover could unleash radicalism, spur drug trafficking in the region and increase refugee influx. But especially for Tajikistan, the support of the Tajiks, who constitute Afghanistan’s resistance and have long faced discrimination, is indisputable.

Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rahmon, who has been in power since the collapse of the Soviet Union, is expected to push forward a proceeding against President Vladimir Putin on his upcoming visit. © Dimitry Astakhov / Sputnik / AFP via Getty Images

Tajikistan’s President Emomali Rahmon last month mentioned the withdrawal of the final army from Afghanistan by the United States, ending the 20-year war there, “the overall weight of the negative effects of withdrawal from the United Nations rests on the shoulders of neighboring countries. I have. ” ..

“If we leave the situation without attention, there is a risk that the situation in 2001 will be repeated,” he said, referring to the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the United States that caused the United States’ involvement in Afghanistan. ..

The history of the two countries has long been intertwined, with hundreds of thousands of Tajiks (the second largest ethnic group in Afghanistan) seeking refuge during the civil war in the 1990s.

As a sign of the close relationship between Rahmon and the leaders of the Resistance, he awarded the highest honor of Masoud’s father Tajikistan for his support during the Tajik civil war this month. Rahmon supported the opposition Northern Alliance, led by Masoud, during the Taliban’s reign in the 1990s.

On condition of anonymity, Western diplomats in the region said Ramon could use the Taliban threat to strengthen domestic support, as an “excuse for further crackdowns on opposition parties” and as an introduction to more counterterrorism measures. Stated.

The exiled Afghan government and resistance fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan’s Panjshir province are using the Tajikistan capital Dushanbe as a base for planning their next steps. “We plan to announce formal resistance to the Taliban within a month,” said Pedrum, who has a $ 200,000 Taliban bounty in his head. He and his wife, a journalist, have turned into politicians, with the late Ahmad Shah Massoud’s cousin Ferresta Hazrati leading the resistance council.

Abdul Latif Pedrum
“We either accept or resist the Islamic state,” said Abdul Latif Pedrum, leader of the National Parliamentary Party in Afghanistan. © Didor Sadulloev / Reuters

Given that the Taliban are hesitant to participate in negotiations with the federal government, they have no choice but to participate in the war, Pedrum said. “We either accept or resist the Islamic State. Nothing is more important to us than freedom. We cannot afford to live in the circumstances we have under the Islamic State.” He said.

He said that as resistance gained momentum, support for resistance would increase. So far, it is only funded by wealthy Afghans, but hopes to get more support from Russia, the traditional guarantor of Central Asia. “We want good relations with all the countries in the region, but of all of them, Russia is arguably the most powerful,” he said.

Mr. Pedrum said the Resistance has “very good” contact with Moscow “beyond the ministerial level” and Rahmon, who has been in power since the collapse of the Soviet Union, will meet with President Vladimir Putin on his upcoming visit. He said it was expected to boost the Resistance proceedings.

Taliban soldiers guarding Panjshir, Afghanistan
The Taliban faced a pocket of last stand from the Afghan government exiled in Panjshir © Mohammad Asif Khan / AP

However, Central Asian expert at the Carnegie Moscow Center, Temur Umarov, suspects that resistance could rely on support from Moscow. “Russia understands that the most probable future scenario for Afghanistan is one in which the Taliban play an important role there, while resistance forces can no longer regain power even in some states. “Yes,” said Umarov.

Still, members of the resistance claim that Afghan resources such as copper, lithium, iron and aluminum provide incentives for Moscow. “It’s also an economic war. Russians don’t help us for God, but they help us for the economy,” Pedrum said.

Pedrum and Masoud are reluctant to work with Saleh, and broader resistance is plagued by combat, but they are united in the need for global support.

Mohammad Zahir Agbar, an ambassador from the former government of Afghanistan to Tajikistan and now considered to represent Saleh, said: We are talking about international terrorism here because it threatens the whole world. “

How Tajikistan became the hub of Afghanistan’s resistance

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