Published: 12:16, August 30, 2021 | Updated: 12:15, August 30, 2021
China, Russia show united stance
By Mo Jingxi, Liu Xuan and Zhou Jin in Beijing

A woman arranges clothes and other daily necessities donated by local residents to Afghan refugees in Lille, northern France, on Aug 24. (SEBASTIEN COURDJI / XINHUA)

China and Russia agreed to strengthen communication and coordination on the Afghan issue as President Xi Jinping and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin exchanged in-depth views on the situation in the war-torn country in a phone conversation on Aug 25.

Xi said that China encourages all factions in Afghanistan to establish a broad-based, inclusive political framework through consultation, adopt moderate and prudent domestic and foreign policies, renounce relations with all kinds of terrorist groups and get along with the rest of the world, especially neighboring countries.

He said China respects Afghanistan’s sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity, adheres to noninterference in the nation’s internal affairs and plays a constructive role in promoting the political settlement of the Afghan issue.

During their conversation, Putin said that the evolution of the situation in Afghanistan reveals that external forces’ policy of imposing their own political model does not work and will only bring destruction and catastrophe to related countries.

Noting that China and Russia share a similar position and common interests with regard to the Afghan issue, Putin said his country stands ready to have closer contact and coordination with China to actively participate in multilateral mechanisms related to the Afghan issue and to crack down on terrorism and drug trafficking.

Russia will also work with China to prevent the spillover of security risks from Afghanistan, resist interference and destruction by external forces and safeguard regional safety and stability, Putin said.

Stressing that only the wearer of the shoes knows if they fit or not, Xi said that only the Chinese and Russian peoples could say which system works in their own countries, calling on the two countries to deepen cooperation in opposing external interference and take their destiny into their own hands.

Xi said that China firmly supports Russia following a development path that is consistent with its national conditions and resolutely supports the measures Russia has adopted to safeguard its national sovereignty and security.

Putin said Russia objects to politicizing COVID-19 origin tracing and hopes to continue to deepen practical cooperation with China in all areas, including fighting against the virus, he said.

Also on Aug 25, the Chinese Foreign Ministry confirmed a meeting between Chinese Ambassador to Afghanistan Wang Yu and a senior Afghan Taliban leader the previous day, saying the two sides had an unimpeded and effective communication and consultation.

Kabul is an important platform and channel for China and the Afghan Taliban to discuss important matters of all kinds, ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told a daily news conference.

An Afghan Taliban delegation, led by Abdul Salam Hanafi, deputy head of the Taliban’s political office, met with Chinese diplomats in Kabul on Aug 24, Muhammad Naeem, a spokesman for the Taliban’s political office, said on social media.

The two sides discussed issues from the security of the Chinese embassy and its diplomats to the current situation in Afghanistan and humanitarian aid, he said.

China adopts a friendly policy toward the Afghan people, and respects their independent decision on their own future, Wang said, adding that it supports the implementation of the principle of “Afghan owned and Afghan led”.

In Geneva, a Chinese envoy on Aug 24 highlighted that military forces of the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia must be held accountable for their violations of human rights in Afghanistan, and the related UN resolution must cover this issue.

Speaking at the Special Session of the UN Human Rights Council on Afghanistan on Aug 24 morning, Chen Xu, Ambassador of China to the UN at Geneva, stressed that power politics and military means lead nowhere, but only undermine regional security and stability and violate the human rights of local people.

“It must be pointed out that the United States and a few other countries, under the pretext of democracy and human rights, conducted military interventions in sovereign states, imposed their own models on countries with different history, culture, and national conditions,” Chen said.

“Such acts have seriously undermined the sovereignty and territorial integrity of those countries and brought severe disasters to their people. This indeed is a profound lesson,” he added.

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