Taliban make it loud and clear: China is our top ally

The new regime’s spokesman calls Beijing the ‘most important partner’ as the world still waits for the Taliban to form government.
A woman holds up a protest message as she demonstrates, along with several other women, in front of the presidential palace in Kabul on Friday. The protesters called upon the Taliban regime to respect and preserve women’s rights.(Reuters)
A woman holds up a protest message as she demonstrates, along with several other women, in front of the presidential palace in Kabul on Friday. The protesters called upon the Taliban regime to respect and preserve women’s rights.(Reuters)
Published on Sep 04, 2021 03:34 AM IST
Copy Link
Agencies | , Peshawar/kabul

Describing China as its “most important partner”, the Taliban group has said that it looks up to Beijing for support as war-ravaged Afghanistan faces widespread hunger and the possibility of a major economic collapse.

Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said the group supports Beijing’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative that aims to link China with Africa, Asia and Europe through a network of ports, railways, roads and industrial parks.

“China is our most important partner and represents a fundamental and extraordinary opportunity for us because it is ready to invest and rebuild our country,” Geo News quoted Mujahid as saying in an interview to an Italian newspaper on Thursday.

There are “rich copper mines in the country, which, thanks to the Chinese, can be put back into operation and modernised. In addition, China is our pass to markets all over the world,” said Mujahid.

China, too, has been making positive statements on the Taliban ever since it came to power in Kabul, and has expressed hope that the insurgents will follow moderate domestic and foreign policies, combat terrorist forces, live in harmony with other countries, and live up to the aspiration of its people and the international community.

Afghan situation likely on BRICS summit agenda

The aftermath of the Taliban toppling the US-backed government in Kabul is likely to be discussed during a BRICS summit scheduled for later this month, Beijing indicated on Friday. The 13th BRICS summit will be held virtually under the chairmanship of India.

“BRICS is an important platform for cooperation between emerging markets and developing countries. It is a positive stabilising constructive force in international affairs,” Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told reporters when asked whether the summit will discuss the situation in Afghanistan.

EU sets conditions for building ties with Taliban

EU countries on Friday laid out their conditions for stepping up engagement with the Taliban, agreeing to establish a joint Kabul civilian presence to help departures if security allows.

“We have to engage with the new government in Afghanistan, which doesn’t mean recognition. It’s an operational engagement,” EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said, following a meeting of the bloc’s foreign ministers in Slovenia. “This operational engagement will increase depending on the behaviour of this government.”

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Close Story
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP
×
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Wednesday, December 01, 2021