The Taliban and China reaffirmed their trust in one another when a top Taliban official commented that the People’s Republic of China is a “trustworthy friend,” according to reports.
The Deputy Director of the Taliban’s office in Qatar claimed that they would support China’s effort to build the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The BRI is a global initiative promoted by China to increase trade between the Indo-Pacific and Middle Eastern countries. Many have compared this project to the Silk Road.
Experts have noted that the United States’ chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan has fueled China’s desire to increase power within the Indo-Pacific and the Middle East. The Heritage Foundation’s Center for Asian studies published a report detailing China’s daunting plan for the BRI, and the United States’ lacking response to it. This initiative has been covered very little, and very few people are aware of this large project the Chinese have taken on.
According to Fox News, a news outlet of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party), The Global Times, labeled the exit of Afghanistan a “U.S. humiliation” and even said that the U.S. “cannot win a war anymore” following the dramatic Taliban takeover. American Enterprise Institute’s senior scholar on Asian studies Zack Cooper told Fox News “there are real opportunities here for China. China has been very deeply engaged with Pakistan through the Belt and Road initiative. And I think we’ll see the possibility of more Belt and Road investment into Afghanistan.”
Besides China’s involvement in Afghanistan and the building of the Belt and Road Initiative, both China and Afghanistan have been known for supporting and being proponents of extreme human rights abuses. Recently China has been in the hot seat for reports of organ harvesting initiatives, using aborted fetuses in vaccines, and placing Christians and Muslims in concentration camps. On Tuesday, the Taliban announced that they are officially implementing Sharia Law.
The Biden administration has continually said they “don’t trust” the Taliban, but have been continually working with them; whether that be giving out the names of Americans for “evacuation,” or considering continuing humanitarian aide to Afghanistan.
The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan is having ricocheting consequences on not only the United States, but for the entire Middle East, Asia, and Europe.