China to extend $72m in military aid to Afghanistan
KABUL (Pajhwok): A high ranking Chinese military official on Monday said besides development and economic cooperation his country would extend 480 million Chinese yuan (nearly $72 million) in military aid to Afghanistan.
General Fang Fenghui, the Chief of the General Staff of the PLA, who arrived in Kabul on an official visit at the head of a high-level delegation, met President Ashraf Ghani at the Presidential Palace in Kabul.
President Ghani had earlier urged China to help the Afghan security forces in their fight against terrorists.
A statement from the Presidential Palace said President Ghani met with General Fang Fenghui and the delegation accompanying him.
The statement said Gen. Fang informed President Ghani about his Chinese counterpart’s views, plans and programmes about Afghanistan and the region and called relations between Kabul and Beijing based on friendship and cooperation.
Gen. Fang told Ghani that the people of China still remembered and commended irrigation projects implemented during his job in the World Bank.
He said China praised the Afghanistan government’s efforts for peace and countering terrorism and assured of his country’s support in this regard on behalf of the Chinese president.
The Chinese military leader supported President Ghani’s strategy that he presented at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit aimed at mustering regional support against terrorism.
Gen. Fang said to implement that strategy a meeting of the heads of state of regional countries would be called in summer.
He said Afghanistan’s location as a roundabout in the Central Asia had enormous importance for China’s economic belt but terrorism posed a huge threat to this and that was why China insisted on countering the threat of terrorism.
The Chinese general said Afghanistan, Tajikistan, China and Pakistan should jointly fight against terrorism under a quadrilateral framework, insisting on intelligence sharing and cooperation between the four nations.
He expressed his concern over the existence of terrorist groups and praised the Afghan security forces’ struggle against international terrorism.
He said China had increased its cooperation with Afghanistan in the fight against terrorism in light of its own resources.
For his part, President Ghani lauded China’s cooperation with Afghanistan and said Kabul was trying to further improve its relations with China.
He said terrorism not only posed a serious threat to Afghanistan but to China, region and the entire world, adding the Afghan forces were bravely fighting the menace.
He said terrorists entered Afghanistan after receiving military training abroad and they carried out terrorists attacks last year to destabilize northeastern Afghanistan.
Ghani thanked his Chinese counterpart for endorsing his plan on regional cooperation against terrorism and arranging a meeting of the heads of states of regional countries in this regard.
He called as beneficial the proposed joint fight against terrorism by Afghanistan, Tajikistan, China and Pakistan and said the campaign should have a clear mechanism and action should be taken against all terrorist groups.
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