PHOTO: Valery Sharifulin/TASS via Getty Images
The Taliban have called on Russia to show restraint in its military invasion of Ukraine. Really.In a statement, the Islamist group who seized control of Afghanistan in August after years of bloody warfare, called on Russia and Ukraine to protect the lives of Afghans living in the country.
Russia launched its full-scale military invasion of Ukraine on Thursday, attacking on multiple fronts on land, air and sea. Today, Russian forces are closing in on the capital Kyiv, a city of 2.8 million people.The Taliban said on Friday that the group is closely watching the developments in Ukraine, and expressed concern over the possibility of “civilian casualties.” In a statement released by the group’s foreign ministry, the Islamists said it will take a neutral position in the conflict.“The Islamic Emirate calls for restraint by both parties. All sides need to desist from taking positions that could intensify violence.” said the statement put out by the group's foreign ministry. The Taliban urged both sides to cease clashes and asked them to “resolve the crisis through dialogue and peaceful means.”After Russia invaded Ukraine in the early hours of Thursday morning, governments all over the world rushed to set out their position on the conflict. The Taliban joined in on Friday, and announced the group would take a neutral position.The group now faces a challenge to get international recognition after seizing the country in August, and the Islamists are trying to avoid another round of international isolation and economic hardship that marked their rule over Afghanistan in the late 90s. “The Islamic Emirate also calls on parties to the conflict to pay attention to safeguarding the lives of Afghan students and migrants in Ukraine.” Said the Taliban in the statement.