China is evidently one of the most important and close emerging allies for the newly-formed Taliban government. China appears to have been given the space to demand, manage and influence the future of this war-torn country, despite the blockage of western aid and funding.
This reality is evident in the statements that China made during the recent meeting of the Foreign Ministers on Afghanistan at the First Meeting of the Neighboring Countries. It was basically addressed by Wang Yi, China’s State Counselor and Foreign Minister.
Yi pointed out that Afghanistan is at the crossroads in history and faces severe challenges with humanitarian issues, peoples’ livelihoods, and the Covid-19 pandemic. He also suggested that these issues could be used by “international forces” to create new problems from Afghanistan, which is a hint towards the US, and other western allies.
“Taliban announced an interim government which is a sign of the uncertainty facing Afghanistan’s future. He said that as neighbouring countries, we want to see Afghanistan emerge from war and chaos and move forward with development, by leveraging the opportunity to have a positive impact on the situation.”
Yi also criticised the US and its allies as being the main culprits in the current chaos in Afghanistan.
The Afghan problem is being caused by the US and its allies. He stated that terrorist forces in Afghanistan over the past 20 years have increased rather than being eliminated and that Afghans were forced to live in poverty and hardship, instead of developing and achieving dignity.
The withdrawal of NATO and US forces from Afghanistan, and the subsequent takeover by the Taliban regime have seen western countries block their financial aid to Afghanistan, causing serious humanitarian and financial crises.
China has maintained contact with the Taliban at this critical moment and has promised them supplies, aids, and future funding. This has pushed the Taliban’s inclination towards the Chinese.
China also stated that it expected the Taliban to eliminate East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM), aka The Turkistani Islamic Party. This group has been responsible for terror attacks in Xinjiang, China. Its goal is to create an independent Muslim state called East Turkestan to replace Xinjiang.
China has taken strong action against Uygur Muslims in Xinjiang and placed a large number in detention centers.
The Taliban will likely meet the Chinese demand to eradicate ETIM, given their dependence on China for humanitarian aid fundings.
It is clear that China’s increased influence will have a negative impact on the US and western countries. They are being called the “spoilers” and may attempt to exploit the current political, economic, and humanitarian crisis in China to increase their own problems to support the Taliban regime.