Chinese FM visits Qatar to meet with Taliban representatives
China has pledged to provide Afghanistan with aid as the country battles to move past 20 years of US occupation
By News Desk - October 25 2021

(Photo credit: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China)

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has arrived in the Qatari capital Doha where he is set to meet with a Taliban delegation in the first high-level meeting since the chaotic withdrawal of US troops two months ago.

The Chinese top diplomat will be in Qatar on 25 and 26 October before going on a two-day trip to Greece, Serbia, Albania and Italy.

The talks during Wang’s visit are the latest high-level contact between the sides and will “provide an opportunity to have an in-depth exchange of views on Afghanistan’s situation and issues of joint concern,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said at a daily briefing.

“As a long-time friendly neighbor and partner of Afghanistan, China has advocated the use of dialogue and engagement in guiding the situation in Afghanistan towards positive development, and to help the Afghan people overcome difficulties, Wenbin added.

Wang Yi met in July with a delegation led by a top Taliban leader, Abdul Ghani Baradar, in the Chinese city of Tianjin, right before the group took power in Afghanistan.

“Since August this year, the situation in Afghanistan has undergone fundamental changes and the Afghan people have a historic opportunity to independently decide the country’s destiny. Meanwhile, however, they still face many difficulties and challenges and are in urgent need of external support,” Wang Yi said prior to his visit, as reported by AP.

Last month Beijing announced that it would donate 200 million yuan (US$31 million) worth of aid, including food and coronavirus vaccines, to Afghanistan. In exchange the country has sought assurances from the Taliban that they would cut ties with terror groups, in particular with the East Turkestan Islamic Movement.

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