Karzai to push for economic, security links with China
KABUL (PAN): President Hamid Karzai's four-day visit to China from Sept. 25-28 is aimed at further cementing political and economic relations between the two countries, his chief spokesman said on Tuesday.
During the presidential trip, Afghanistan and China would sign three memoranda of understanding on bilateral cooperation, Aimal Faizi told a media briefing in Kabul on the eve of the visit.
Karzai would meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping and other host leaders, besides attending the opening ceremony of the Euro-Asia Economic Forum (EAEF). It is Karzai’s second trip to China in as many years.
The spokesman said Kabul would urge Beijing to help train and equip Afghan security forces, invest in the war-torn country, step up the development of the Ainak Copper Project in Logar province and discuss China's interest in exploring fuel and gas at the Amu River base.
The ex-Taliban defence minister had been freed in response to the Afghan government's request, he said. "Our priority is that Mullah Baradar should return home and cooperate with the peace process. If Pakistan opposes this proposition, we agree to his travel to a third country but his address should be known."
He demanded the freed insurgent leader's security must be guaranteed and the High Peace Council's complete access to him for talks ensured.
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