China on Wednesday declared that it will provide 200 million yuan (US$31 million) worth of aid to the Taliban-led Afghanistan. The aid will reportedly also include grains, winter supplies and coronavirus vaccines to the famished country with a threat of an economic collapse looming over it.
The decision was announced just a day after the Taliban announced the ministries and ministers of its ‘new Sharia abiding government’. State councillor and foreign minister Wang Yi in a virtual meeting with counterparts and senior diplomats from Pakistan, Iran, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan stated the same.
“China has decided to urgently provide 200 million yuan ($30.96 million) worth of grains, winter supplies, vaccines, and medicines to Afghanistan according to the needs of the Afghan people,” reported Xinhua, the state-run press agency of the People’s Republic of China. Xinhua had also shared that China foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin has welcomed the Taliban’s announcement of a government.
China has decided to urgently provide 200 million yuan (30.96 million U.S. dollars) worth of grains, winter supplies, vaccines, and medicines to Afghanistan according to the needs of the Afghan people https://t.co/NQq4IsEpDY pic.twitter.com/TM786NK11D— China Xinhua News (@XHNews) September 8, 2021
Wenbin has stated that China sees the Taliban’s announcement of government as important because it ended over 3 weeks of anarchy and uncertainty in the country.
In the first batch of aid, China will be sending across 3 million vaccine doses and has also pledged to provide more anti-epidemic and emergency medical material.
China slams US for abandoning its responsibilities
Wang Yi further said, “No country is more unwilling than we are to see Afghanistan return to war or disaster, and no country is more eager than we are to see it return to peace and development,” claiming to have witnessed the disastrous aftermath of the war as a neighbour.
He even attacked the US for not just fleeing from its military role but also abandoning its responsibilities towards the nation. “They have more of a duty to supply economic, livelihood and humanitarian assistance to the Afghan people than any other country,” he said urging other countries especially the neighbours to come forward to seize the ‘key opportunity’ to exert a positive role.
China advises Taliban to cut ties with extremist terrorist forces
Beijing’s desperation to establish key communication and play a vital role in Afghanistan’s development is understandable.
While the withdrawal of the US from Afghanistan has given China the opportunity to show its political and economic prowess, the porous borders and notorious Uygur militants of the East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) at the Afghanistan border has made Beijing uneasy.
“No country expects peace and development in Afghanistan more than we do,” said Wang Yi in the meeting.
“All parties should strengthen intelligence sharing and border control cooperation to catch and eliminate terrorist groups that have sneaked in from Afghanistan,” said Yi further in a bid to encourage stability in the region.
The Taliban too had declared China as its ‘crucial partner.’ The Jihadi organization had recently expressed willingness to join China’s ambitious ‘Belt and Road’ project.
A Taliban delegation headed by its senior leader Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar had also held talks with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang in July.