Afghanistan, China vow to strengthen cooperation

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Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang on January 21 held a phone conversation with Amir Khan Muttaqi, acting foreign minister of the Afghan interim government, with both sides pledging to strengthen cooperation and vowing to combat terrorism, Xinhua news agency reported.

Qin said that China attaches great importance to the safety of Chinese personnel and institutions in Afghanistan, hoping that the Afghan side will take strong measures to ensure their safety.

Muttaqi said that Afghanistan prohibits any forces from using its territory for activities that sabotage the Afghanistan-China friendship and undermine China’s interests.

The country will resolutely combat all forms of terrorism and take strong measures to ensure the safety of Chinese personnel and institutions in Afghanistan, he added.

Qin said China highly values developing good-neighborliness, friendship and cooperation with Afghanistan, and always respects its independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity, the independent choices made by the Afghan people and their religious beliefs and ethnic customs.

China does not interfere in Afghanistan’s internal affairs, nor does it seek self-interest or a sphere of influence in Afghanistan, he said.

Qin said China supports the Afghan interim government in building an inclusive and broad-based political structure, implementing moderate and sound domestic and foreign policies, combating terrorism in all its forms and forging friendly relations with all countries, especially its neighbors.

China sympathizes with the Afghan people over their suffering and stands ready to provide more assistance to Afghanistan’s economic and social development and the improvement of people’s livelihood, he said.

Muttaqi said that Afghanistan welcomes China in playing a more important role in international and regional affairs and expects to strengthen exchanges and cooperation with China.