China Vows Support for ‘Pivotal’ Force Taliban in Afghanistan, Demands it Cut Ties With ETIM

As the United States and coalition forces are set to fully withdraw troops by September, the Taliban* has been taking districts and border crossings around the country in a flurry of offensives against the Kabul government’s troops, triggering security concerns in China, which shares a border with the war-ravaged nation.

Nine Taliban* representatives met with China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi in the northern city of Tianjin in the framework of a two-day visit to the country after an invitation from Chinese authorities, according to Taliban spokesperson Mohammed Naeem.

​The Taliban spokesperson added that the group, led by Taliban negotiator and deputy leader Mullah Baradar Akhund, also met China’s special envoy for Afghanistan.

“(The) delegation assured China that they will not allow anyone to use Afghan soil against China… China also reiterated its commitment to a continuation of their assistance with Afghans and said they will not interfere in Afghanistan’s issues but will help solve the problems and restoration of peace in the country,” said Naeem.

‘Pivotal Military, Political Force’

A Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson confirmed that senior Chinese diplomat Wang Yi met Taliban representatives in Tianjin.

Slamming the withdrawal of US and NATO troops from Afghanistan as representing a failure of US policies, Wang urged  the Taliban to play a role in the peace process, reported the South China Morning Post.

China pledged to support Afghanistan’s…

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