China's Xi urges Afghanistan to stamp out terrorism, vows more aid

China's Xi urges Afghanistan to stamp out terrorism, vows more aid By A Robin - September 17, 2021
Chinese President Xi Jinping

Chinese President Xi Jinping attends a welcoming ceremony for Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos outside the Great Hall of the People, in Beijing, China

China's President Xi Jinping urged "relevant parties" in Afghanistan to eradicate terrorism and promised to provide more help to the war-torn nation, state news agency Xinhua said on Friday.

China shares a land border with Afghanistan, where the Taliban named a new government this month. The Islamist militant group retook control in August as U.S.-led foreign forces ended their 20-year presence there.

Afghanistan should be guided to be more open and inclusive, and pursue moderate domestic and foreign policies, Xi told a meeting of leaders of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization and another regional grouping, the agency said in a report.

"Certain countries" should assume their due responsibilities for Afghanistan's future development as "instigators" of the situation, Xi added, in an apparent reference to the United States and its allies.

Experts say Afghanistan's economy is in crisis and a humanitarian disaster looms. Western nations have been reluctant to provide funds to the Taliban without assurances that it will uphold human rights, especially those of women.

China, which has pledged aid and COVID-19 vaccine doses to Afghanistan, has said the United States and its allies have a duty to supply the war-torn nation with economic and humanitarian aid.

China is also known to be worried about militants from its far western region of Xinjiang, some of whom are based in Afghanistan, where they have long been allies of the Taliban.

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization groups China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Pakistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. Afghanistan is an observer state.

REUTERS / Reporting by Gabriel Crossley; Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky and Clarence Fernandez

By A Robin - September 17, 2021

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