Taliban Boast Communist China is Ready to Invest Billions in Afghanistan
'We have promised them security for their investment and assets'
Taliban deputy minister of Information and Culture, Zabihullah Mujahid, boasted that China is ready to invest billions of dollars into Afghanistan.
During an interview with Voice of America News (VOA), Mujahid said China required assurances that its workers and assets would be protected in return for respect for the terrorist group's sovereign rule.
“China is a neighbor and has a strong economy."
"We are trying to develop trade and economic relations with them."
"However, although we want China to have trade and investment with us, we will not tolerate any interference in our internal affairs."
The Taliban minister cited the Mes Aynak copper mine as “one of the important areas where [the Chinese] want to invest billions of dollars,” funding his regime sorely needs.
“We have promised them security for their investment and assets,” Mujahid said.
Mes Aynak is also the site of a 5,000-year-old Buddhist city that is of major archaeologic significance to Buddhist and Afghan history.
Two Chinese state-owned companies secured the drilling concession at Mes Aynak in 2017, but the project was delayed by a shortage of coal and mineral reserves needed to support the operation.
Work was also delayed by security threats from the Taliban insurgency and by hotly debated concerns that exploiting the mine would require damaging or obliterating the archaeological site.
VOA asked Mujahid about claims by the Islamic State that the suicide bomber it dispatched to attack a mosque in Kunduz last week was an Uyghur, the oppressed Muslim people of China’s Xinjiang province. Western analysts viewed the unusually specific identification of the suicide bomber as an effort by ISIS to drive a wedge between the Taliban and China.
“We have not talked to any country about this issue. All Daesh operatives are Afghans. There is no foreigner among them,” Mujahid told VOA, using another name for ISIS.
Neon Nettle reported last month, The Taliban has boasted that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) wants to “beef up” relations with the terrorist group in Afghanistan.
China has been eyeing Afghanistan and the potential to cash in on its untapped mining opportunities since Democrat Joe Biden handed the country to the Taliban.
The CCP is now "actively engaging" with the Taliban.