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Russian Envoys To Central Asia, Kabul Meet In Tashkent

Russian envoys from the Central Asian states and Afghanistan are meeting in the Uzbek capital to discuss the situation in the region as foreign forces in Afghanistan prepare to withdraw the bulk of their troops.

Russia's Foreign Ministry said Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin is chairing the Tashkent session.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan would all be represented at the meeting but did not elaborate.

Uzbekistan's foreign minister is currently in the United States.

The Russian newspaper "Kommersant" published an interview with Russia's ambassador to Tajikistan, Igor Lyakin-Frolov, on December 10 in which he predicted the significance of Russia's military base in Tajikistan will increase in Central Asia as foreign forces pull out of Afghanistan.

Based on reporting by Kommersant,, and Interfax