Caixin
Aug 30, 2021 04:44 PM
WORLD

Chinese Foreign Minister Talks Afghanistan With U.S. Counterpart

What’s new: China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi discussed Afghan affairs, including potential actions to be taken by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in a phone conversation Sunday, the second in two weeks, according to a statement released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Wang said “it is necessary for all parties to make contact with the Taliban and guide it actively.” He also called on the U.S. “to work with the international community to provide Afghanistan with urgently needed economic, livelihood and humanitarian assistance and help the new Afghan political structure maintain normal operation of government institutions.”

Blinken was quoted in the statement as saying that the U.S. believes that the UNSC “should speak in a clear and unified voice” on issues including the safe evacuation of foreign citizens, humanitarian assistance to Afghan people and counterterrorism.

Wang noted that any action to be taken by the UNSC should “contribute to easing tensions” and “contribute to a smooth transition of the situation in Afghanistan” rather than the opposite, according to the statement.

The background: Wang and Blinken held their first phone conversation on Aug. 16 to discuss cooperation on the transition of power in Afghanistan, days after the Taliban took control of Kabul.

During that call, Wang said that China and the U.S. should cooperate to “push for a soft landing of the Afghan issue, so that a new civil war or humanitarian disaster will be prevented in Afghanistan and the country will not relapse into a hotbed and shelter for terrorism.”

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use.

Contact reporter Cai Xuejiao (xuejiaocai@caixin.com) and editor Lu Zhenhua (luzhenhua@caixin.com)

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