In an interview with RIA Novosti, Anatoly Antonov said:
“It seems that ISAF forces in Afghanistan did not fulfil a mandate issued by the UN Security Council. Neither have we seen a full report on their activities there. Hopefully, NATO-led Resolute Support mission will be able to do more.”
Antonov added that despite the international efforts, Taliban still poses a serious threat for the Afghan security.
“The number of killed civilians hit a record high last year. Of course, Taliban insurgents also incur losses. But neither party has managed to turn the situation to its advantage.”
Antonov also underscored that suspension of cooperation between NATO and Russia on Afghanistan was counterproductive.
NATO foreign ministers announced the decision to suspend all practical contact with Moscow in early April 2014 citing the situation in Ukraine.
Escalating Tensions in Afghanistan Pose Threat to Russia, Allies in Central Asia
Escalation of the conflict in northern Afghanistan threatens Russia and its allies with a possible spread of conflict to Central Asia, Anatoly Antonov said.
“An escalation of tension in northern Afghanistan poses a serious threat for Russia and its allies due to its possible 'spillover' to Central Asia. There are some signs of deteriorating security situation on the border between Turkmenistan and Afghanistan.”
Following the withdrawal of international combat troops from Afghanistan in late 2014, Afghan authorities took up responsibility to provide security in the country with their own resources. The Taliban intensified its activity.
Islamic State Could Aggravate Situation in Afghanistan
The Islamic State could affect the situation in Afghanistan as it tries to expand its reign of terror, Anatoly Antonov said.
The deputy minister also noted the continued presence of al-Qaeda in Afghanistan.
“It is impossible not to draw attention to a new alarming development — the radicals have begun to move into the camp of the Islamic State.”
Afghan forces have been solely responsible for security in the country since the start of 2015, when NATO ended its International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) mission and launched a new, non-combat mission in the country.
The group has seized vast areas of Iraq and Syria, and attracted thousands of foreign fighters. Armed groups in several other countries have sworn alliance to IS.