Inside Story

Will US confront Russia on alleged Afghanistan reward killings?

Kremlin denies paying Taliban-linked fighters to kill US troops.

Russia has denied paying fighters linked to the Taliban in Afghanistan to kill US troops.

The reported allegation has triggered renewed debate on President Donald Trump’s strategy to end the United States’s war in Afghanistan and his relationship with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin.

The New York Times said investigators focused in part on a Taliban attack last year that killed three US marines and an Afghan contractor near a US army base.

Trump denied being told about intelligence reports dating back to February.

Members of Congress want to know why they were not told either.

A Kremlin official told Inside Story the “bounty killing” claims are “fake news”.

How could the controversy shape efforts to end the US’s longest war? 

Presenter: Imran Khan 


Richard Weitz – defence expert at Wikistrat Global Consultancy

Nikolay Surkov – senior research fellow at the Primakov Institute of World Economy and International Relations

Omar Zakhilwal – former ambassador of Afghanistan in Islamabad, and a former minister of finance