China, Russia eye closer friendship amid tensions with West

Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin promised ever-closer cooperation and oversaw a series of deals on Saturday, as the two countries deepen ties in the face of growing tensions with the West. In what was Putin’s fourth trip to China since Xi became president in 2013, the two men stressed their shared outlook which mirrors the ...

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ISIS loyalists as active as ever in Afghanistan: Russian Foreign Ministry


KABUL: The Russian Foreign Ministry has said the loyalists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group are as active as ever in Afghanistan. There are concerns that the loyalists of the group will attempt to expand activities and foothold across Afghanistan and into the Central Asia. The Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova told reporters “The ...

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Putin has reportedly declined Islamabad’s invitation to visit Pakistan


The Russian President Vladimir Putin has reportedly declined Islamabad’s invitation to visit Pakistan amid reports the decision since there were not enough reasons for the proposed visit. Islamabad had reportedly sent an invitation to Putin to visit Pakistan and inaugurate a key pipeline project, the $2 billion liquefied natural gas (LNG) North-South Pipeline Project from Karachi to Lahore. According to ...

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Russia Embassy rejects Moscow is cooperating with Taliban to fight ISIS


KABUL: The Embassy of Russia in Kabul has rejected reports regarding Moscow’s cooperation with the Taliban group in fight against the loyalists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group in the country. According to a statement by the Embassy of Russia, the statements by the Russian Presidential Special Envoy for Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov have been repeatedly ...

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Putin rejects Panama Papers corruption claims


PANAMA CITY: Russian President Vladimir Putin denied any “element of corruption” on Thursday after a massive leak of confidential papers linked a close friend to a hidden $2 billion offshore empire, and he blamed the United States for orchestrating the scandal. Putin boasted that a year-long international media probe into the leak of 11.5 million offshore financial documents from Panamanian ...

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ISIS acting quietly to expand presence in Afghanistan, Russian envoy says


The loyalists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group is acting quietly in Afghanistan as the terror group plans to use the country for wider expansion. The remarks by Zamir Kabulov, the Russian presidential envoy for Afghanistan, comes as the loyalists of the terror group have received major setbacks during the recent months as a result ...

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Kremlin backs Kadyrov for stability’s sake

Ramzan Kadyrov MOSCOW: Moscow’s endorsement of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov for another term is a bid to ensure stability in the crucial region, in a move analysts said turns a blind eye to the strongman’s faults. Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday said Kadyrov, in power since 2007, would continue as acting leader until elections in September after long remaining ...

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Russian envoy estimates ISIS has 10,000 loyalists in Afghanistan


The Russian Presidential envoy to Afghanistan Zamir Kabulov has estimated the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group has 10,000 loyalists in Afghanistan. Kabulov who is also director of the Second Asian Department at the Russian Foreign Ministry has said the terror group is expanding its military activity in Afghanistan. “The IS activity has grown significantly in Afghanistan ...

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‘Delayed reaction:’ Putin blasts Russian sport authorities for Meldonium scandal


March 16, 2016. Russian President Vladimir Putin holds a meeting with Government members in the Kremlin MOSCOW: Russian President Vladimir Putin held Russia’s Ministry of Sport liable for the latest doping scandal linked to the use of Meldonium by some Russian athletes and sharply criticized it for failing to react in a timely manner to the ban of some drugs. ...

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Russia, Tajikistan hold massive military drills near Afghan border


DUSHANBE: Russia and fragile ex-Soviet ally Tajikistan have begun large-scale military drills close to the Central Asian state’s restless border with Afghanistan, a Tajik military official confirmed Tuesday. A spokesman for Tajikistan’s defence ministry said the drills involving around 50,000 Tajik troops and 2,000 Russian troops, including paratroopers flown in from Russia. “The manoeuvres involve around a thousand armoured vehicles, ...

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