Global Times' online petition demands US return money to Afghans generates 315,000 signatures
Published: Feb 25, 2022 05:48 PM

Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

Click here to sign the joint letter demanding the US to return life-saving money to Afghans.

An online petition launched by the Global Times demanding the US unconditionally return the life-saving money to Afghans received more than 315,000 signatures by Friday, which Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said fully reflected that the theft of the Afghan assets by the US has sparked strong outrage. 

Wang Wenbin, spokesperson from the Chinese Foreign Ministry, said at Friday's media briefing that the US had not shouldered its due responsibility to help the Afghan people alleviate a pressing humanitarian crisis. Instead, it openly plundered the national assets of Afghanistan, further aggravating the suffering of the Afghan people. He noted that what the US has done showed once again that the "rule-based international order" touted by the US is in essence a "rule-based order" to safeguard US hegemony.

President Joe Biden signed an executive order unfreezing $7 billion in Afghan funds held in the US to distribute the money as the US sees fit. Half of the assets will be used to compensate victims of the September 11 attacks while the other half will be used to set up a trust fund "for the benefit of the Afghan people." The move has not only triggered strong indignation in Afghanistan, but also caused an uproar throughout the international community.

In response, the Global Times launched an online petition on Wednesday demanding that the US unconditionally return the life-saving money to Afghans. The Global Times' joint letter states that the US has no right to arbitrarily deal with other countries' overseas assets, whether by "freezing" the assets or carving them up, and that such actions lack legal basis and are extremely unethical.

Wang said that the US is the one to blame for causing a crisis in Afghanistan. According to reports, a total of 30,000 civilians were killed by the US troops or lost lives due to war, and 11 million became refugees. The US' irresponsible withdrawal from Afghanistan left local people to face an unfolding humanitarian crisis. 

He said China calls on the US to listen carefully to relevant measures to fully lift the freeze of Afghan assets in the US and unilateral sanctions, unconditionally return assets and take concrete actions to repair the damage caused to the Afghan people. 

Global Times