Wang Yi urges world not to neglect Afghanistan during Ukraine crisis
Updated 22:15, 31-Mar-2022

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Thursday urged the international community to not neglect Afghanistan during Ukraine crisis, calling for scaling up investment in the country and helping the Afghan people overcome difficulties.

Wang made the remarks while hosting a dialogue with foreign ministers or representatives from Pakistan, Iran, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Indonesia and Qatar, along with Amir Khan Muttaqi, acting foreign minister of the Afghan interim government, in Tunxi, east China's Anhui Province.

"No country expects Afghanistan to achieve peace, stability, development and prosperity on its own more than we, Afghanistan's neighboring countries," Wang said, highlighting the unique role of neighboring countries in guiding the international perception of the Afghan issue.

The Chinese foreign minister gave a briefing on the Third Foreign Ministers' Meeting Among the Neighboring Countries of Afghanistan, stressing regional countries should adhere to cooperation and not confrontation, adhere to openness and not closure, adhere to equal treatment and oppose strong-arm bullying.

He urged efforts to further gather consensus and cooperation to help Afghanistan stabilize the situation, effectively combat terrorism, improve people's livelihood and develop the economy in line with the "Afghan-led, Afghan-owned" principle.

Muttaqi thanked China for hosting and inviting Afghanistan to the meeting, saying that Afghanistan attaches great importance to the concerns of all parties. He stressed that it will never allow external forces to occupy its territory again, nor will it allow any forces to use its territory against other countries.

Afghanistan is committed to peaceful coexistence, friendly relations and mutually beneficial cooperation with its neighbors, he said, adding that the Afghan side has adjusted its focus and is now concentrating on achieving stability and development.

Afghanistan is ready to become a link for regional connectivity and promote common prosperity with its neighbors, Muttaqi said, voicing hope that Afghanistan's neighbors will give diplomatic recognition to the interim government as soon as possible.

Muttaqi said the U.S. long undermined the political and economic sovereignty of Afghanistan and later destroyed facilities in a hasty withdrawal, leaving the country with a range of difficulties.

Afghanistan will no longer look up to others or rely on the U.S. and Western countries, he stressed.

Muttaqi urged the U.S. to immediately unfreeze Afghan overseas assets and lift sanctions, calling on the international community to support Afghanistan on the matter.

According to Muttaqi, students have returned to schools in Afghanistan to resume classes and its medical, education and other industries have a large number of women.

The caretaker government welcomes the participation of all ethnic groups in politics and will also absorb more professionals to participate in government work, he added.

Wang hoped that the caretaker government of Afghanistan will effectively implement the commitments made and all neighboring countries will continue to play a constructive role for the peaceful reconstruction of the country.

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