UN envoy hails China's strong support for Afghanistan
Kabul, May 13 (Xinhua-ANI): The top United Nations envoy to Afghanistan, Jan Kubis, hailed China's support for the peace and reconstruction process of the war-torn country, saying it is crucial for the rebuilding of Afghanistan.
"The bilateral policy of investment in Afghanistan that is promoted by China is extremely important for the future of Afghanistan, not only for economic and social development but for the future stability and sustainable development of the country and the whole region," Kubis told Xinhua in a recent interview.
"China is not only a permanent member of the Security Council, it is also a regional country, so I would say that China has a very special responsibility for working together with Afghanistan, for a better future of the country and for a more stable region," said Kubis, special representative of the UN secretary-general to Afghanistan and head of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan.
China's economic assistance to Afghanistan dated back to the 1950s when the two countries formed diplomatic ties. Since 2002 China has contributed some 200 million U.S. dollars to the post- Taliban country besides canceling 19.5 million dollars.
China has launched many major projects to help Afghanistan with its post-war reconstruction, ranging from the construction of hospitals, government office buildings and schools to providing equipment for health care and educational institutions.
Earlier this year, Chinese Ambassador to Afghanistan Xu Feihong and Afghan Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul signed an agreement on bilateral economic and technical cooperation worth 23.5 million U. S. dollars.
"I need and like to acknowledge the strong role of China as a member of the UN Security Council, it is from there that I am getting the mandate, and the current mandate is different from the previous ones because it is to work in support of the government," said the top UN diplomat to Afghanistan.
He said that China is a regional partner of Afghanistan and the strong support of China is important for such process like the Istanbul process that is bringing together countries of the region to work with Afghanistan in the very specific areas that will provide for increased cooperation in combating terrorism and drug trafficking.
"In promoting economic development for example, this is very loadable and important support of China for different contacts and formats of cooperation in the region engaging Afghanistan with other neighbors in trilateral consultations," he stated.
"I hope that there will be many areas I remember that China provided support and training for the Afghan police that would in my opinion be also helpful for the post-2014 period. I would like to indeed acknowledge them as strong support to Afghanistan," said the 60-year-old former Slovakian foreign minister.
Last December, China announced to offer 150 million U.S. dollars in unconditional aid to Afghanistan during an international conference held in Bonn, Germany.
Several groups of Afghan government officials traveled to China last year to attend training programs in the field of agriculture, telecommunications, counter-narcotics education and higher education. (Xinhua-ANI)
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