China, Afghanistan, Pakistan can jointly build BRI, extend China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to Afghanistan: Wang Yi
Published: Mar 31, 2022 01:59 PM
Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi Photo: Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi Photo: Ministry of Foreign Affairs

China, Afghanistan and Pakistan can jointly build the Belt and Road Initiative, extend the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to Afghanistan, and help Afghanistan participate in regional connectivity, said Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi at the foreign ministers' meeting between the three countries in Tunxi, East China's Anhui Province. 

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Acting Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi of the Afghan interim government attended the meeting. 

Under the current circumstances, China, Afghanistan and Pakistan should restart the tripartite cooperation mechanism and advance cooperation in the three areas of politics, development and security based on the principles of mutual respect, equal consultation and mutual benefit, Wang said.

We will jointly build the Belt and Road Initiative, extend the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor to Afghanistan, and help Afghanistan participate in regional connectivity, he noted.

He also called on the three countries to strengthen counter-terrorism and security cooperation under the guidance of the new concept of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security.

Qureshi and Muttaqi spoke highly of the significance of the meeting, and thanked China for hosting the meeting and playing a coordinating and leading role. 

Qureshi said that Pakistan supports Afghanistan in strengthening contacts with the outside world and actively responding to the concerns of the international community, and noted that Afghanistan's frozen overseas assets should be returned immediately.

Muttaqi said that Afghanistan understands the concerns of the international community on the rights and interests of women and children, especially girls' education, adding that the government will actively and orderly push forward the issue.

Muttaqi said the world should be assured that Afghanistan will never allow terrorists to use its territory to harm other countries' interests and citizens. Afghanistan hopes to take an active part in jointly building the BRI, Muttaqi said.

On Wednesday, Wang Yi also met with Qatari Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani.

Qatar reiterated its support for the one-China principle and opposed external interference in China's internal affairs. The economic and trade cooperation between Qatar and China has been expanding and China has become the most important energy partner of Qatar. Qatar is willing to be China's sustainable and stable energy supplier and will firmly implement the bilateral cooperation agreement, Sheikh Mohammed said. He added that Qatar attaches great importance to and is willing to actively participate in the important Belt and Road Initiative and will continue to provide convenience for Chinese enterprises to invest in Qatar.

Wang said China is willing to be Qatar's long-term, reliable and stable strategic partner of energy cooperation and actively expand cooperation across the industrial chain.

''The current international situation is volatile with increasing non-peaceful factors. However, the Palestine issue should not be marginalized or forgotten. China supports Middle Eastern countries in strengthening unity and seeking development paths suited to their own choices in an independent spirit, and in building a collective security architecture in the Middle East in an inclusive and conciliatory manner,'' according to Wang.

Wang said China will always be Turkmenistan's reliable partner during a meeting with Turkmen Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Rashid Meredov in Tunxi.

Natural gas cooperation is a priority set by the two heads of state and is of great strategic significance, Meredov said. Turkmenistan regards China as its main energy partner and will not change its established position, and is ready to improve bilateral relations, said Meredov.

According to Wang, the two sides are ready to increase the scale of energy cooperation, and expand cooperation across the energy industry chain, development, green energy, natural gas utilization, technology and equipment. Wang also said both parties will expand cooperation in new areas such as transportation, vocational education, health care and people-to-people exchanges.

The two sides exchanged views on cooperation between China and the five Central Asian states, and expressed readiness to explore the establishment of a summit mechanism to jointly safeguard regional security, peace and stability.

They also exchanged views on the Afghanistan issue. Meredov expressed support for Afghanistan to draw a clear line with terrorist organizations and resolutely fight against all terrorist forces including the ETIM.

Global Times