According to a new report, the Russian government is providing $2.5 million a month to the Taliban to fund “anti-NATO” operations in Afghanistan.
The International Business Times reports:
A Taliban treasurer [said]: "We sell the fuel on and distribute the money directly to our commanders. Accepting money from the Russians is not something we like doing, but it is necessary at this stage of our jihad."
"I just deal with the finances of a few Taliban commanders in one sector in one province. I transfer them the money and then account for its distribution. But there are many other people like me," he added.
The treasurer said the Russians started supplying them with fuel 18 months ago with the group getting it for free, but paying the import duty and keeping the profits. The fuel is sold via front companies to businessmen in Kabul.
The London Times newspaper also reports the fuel from Russia is sent into Afghanistan via the Uzbekistan border and are delivered to front companies working for the militants. This would be the first time the Taliban has admitted to receiving payments, which the U.S. has long accused Russia of making.