Wang Yi Visited Kabul with Belt and Road on the Agenda
March 24, 2022 (EIRNS)—This morning, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi made a surprise visit to Kabul, where he met with Afghan Deputy Prime Minister Abdul Ghani Baradar. A statement from the Chinese Foreign Ministry reports that China welcomed Afghanistan’s active participation in the Belt and Road Initiative, and in particular, extending the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) to Afghanistan. CPEC’s extension to Afghanistan will give it sea access via the port of Gwadar. Wang Yi also expressed China’s hope that Afghanistan will fulfill its stated commitment to prevent any external forces from using its territory for action against the security of other nations.
Next week, Beijing will host its third meeting of Afghanistan and neighboring countries, to further regional stability and connectivity.
Wang was an honored guest at Pakistan’s national day ceremonies, which this year marked the nation’s 75th anniversary. He was also invited to address the March 22-23 Council of Foreign Ministers of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation (OIC) that was meeting in Islamabad, and whose agenda included support for Afghanistan.
It was also a topic of Wang’s bilateral talks with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan. The Chinese readout reported in part: “The two sides fully recognized the positive role of the Foreign Ministers’ Dialogue and the Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on the Afghan Issue Among the Neighboring Countries of Afghanistan. Imran Khan said, China-Afghanistan-Pakistan cooperation is conducive to stability in Afghanistan and its role as a hub in regional connectivity. Pakistan is ready to work with China to jointly advance high-quality Belt and Road cooperation and extend the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to Afghanistan.”