China says it will maintain communication with new Afghan government

'We hope the new Afghanistan authorities will listen broadly to people of all races and faction'


Reuters September 08, 2021
Afghan Taliban delegation headed by Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar visits China. PHOTO: TWITTER/@NafeesM02352820

BEIJING:

China said on Wednesday it is ready to maintain communication with the leaders of the new Taliban government in Afghanistan, calling its establishment a "necessary step" in reconstruction.

Foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin made the comment at a daily briefing in Beijing when asked if China would recognise the new government, whose leaders were named on Tuesday.

Read Taliban want China to play ‘huge role’ in rebuilding Afghanistan 

The Taliban drew from its inner high echelons to fill top posts in Afghanistan's new government, including an associate of the militant group's founder as premier and a wanted man on a US terrorism list as interior minister.

China respects the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Afghanistan, Wang said.

After the Taliban took power in August, China had called for an "open and inclusive" government to be established.

"We hope the new Afghanistan authorities will listen broadly to people of all races and factions, so as to meet the aspirations of its own peoples and the expectations of the international community," said Wang.

For Beijing, a stable and cooperative administration in Kabul would pave the way for an expansion of its overseas infrastructure drive, analysts say. The Taliban, meanwhile, may consider China a crucial source of investment and economic support.

Chinese companies have also been eyeing Afghanistan's vast copper and lithium mines, but experts say the perilous security situation means any immediate commodities rush by investors is unlikely.

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