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  Monday, November 30, 2020
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The Afghan Embassy in Moscow is moving back to its renovated historical quarters
The Afghan Embassy in Moscow is moving back to its renovated historical quarters, granted to it by Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin. This act is of great symbolic significance, showing both nations' willingness to maintain their friendship, the visiting Foreign Minister of Afghanistan, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, pointed out. According to the minister, the building on Povarskaya Street, in downtown Moscow, was offered to Afghanistan as a gift in appreciation of its being the first country to recognize the Soviet Russia. And in 1919, Russia was the first to recognize the Afghan sovereignty. As a spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry's diplomatic corps department explained to RIA Novosti, the Afghan Embassy was headquartered in this building starting in 1922. In 1958, the Soviet Union and Afghanistan signed an agreement letting the building to the Afghan mission free of charge for a period of 99 years, in exchange for the lease, on the same terms, of a land plot in Kabul. The handover of the refurbished mansion in Moscow to the Afghan diplomatic mission was timed to coincide with the transfer of the Soviet ambassadorial compound to the Russian Federation. "With these two acts, we are going two steps toward each other, which are advancing us further on the way to restoring the friendly bilateral relationship," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said at a ceremony in Moscow Friday. Lavrov said the history of Russo-Afghan relations had been through good times and bad times, but that the relations of friendship and cooperation prevailed. The Russian minister reminded his audience that for decades, Soviet specialists had assisted the Afghan people in building plants and factories. Now that Afghanistan is restoring its state on new, democratic principles, Russia continues its assistance, he emphasized. Dr. Abdullah thanked Russia for help in combating the Taliban movement and global terrorism and for its current efforts to consolidate stability in Afghanistan. "I believe there is no room for terrorism ideology-neither in Afghanistan, nor in the region, nor in the rest of the world," he emphasized.
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