Iran FM says had good meeting with Chinese counterpart

April 2, 2022 - 19:35

TEHRAN – Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian, who traveled to China for a meeting on Afghanistan, has said that he had a “good” exchange of views with his Chinese counterpart.

“A good meeting w/ State Councilor FM Wang Yi in Tunxi,” Amir Abdollahian said on Twitter at the end of his trip to China.

He added, “Thanked him for successfully hosting neighbors of Afghanistan. We properly exchanged views on bilateral matters. We insisted on maintaining cooperation & countering coercion, unilateralism & inhuman leverage of sanctions.”

The meeting took place on the sidelines of a regional meeting on Afghanistan which was hosted by China. 

The Iranian foreign minister expressed hope that Afghanistan would be stable and developed at the start of his trip to China. “I am pleased to attend a meeting of Afghanistan's neighbors in China. Afghanistan deserves more international attention. Iran and China reaffirm their support for independence, national unity, and the people's right to self-determination, and hope to see a stable, developed, and interactive Afghanistan,” he said on Twitter. 

The conference of the foreign ministers of Afghanistan’s neighbors was held in China with the participation of the neighbors of Afghanistan and Russia. The Iranian foreign minister met with a number of foreign counterparts participating in the Afghanistan meeting. 

Amir Abdollahian and China’s top diplomat and member of the Chinese State Council Wang Yi held talks over bilateral, regional and international issues on the sidelines of the meeting. 

The two foreign ministers underlined the need to speed up finalizing introduced projects and to continue consultations over expansion of economic cooperation between Tehran and Beijing, according to the Iranian foreign ministry.

Amir Abdollahian extended President Raisi’s greetings to the Chinese president and, given the strong support of the high-ranking officials of China and Iran for bilateral cooperation, underlined the need for realizing the huge potentials of the two nations, especially in economic spheres. Iran’s foreign minister further referred to the importance of people-to-people exchanges between Iran and China. Amir Abdollahian then described the facilitation of the return of Iranian students to China as an effective move to this end.

He said although Covid-related restrictions prevented them from returning to China, it is appropriate that things would return to the pre-pandemic era with the cooperation of the relevant Chinese sectors.

The top Iranian diplomat referred to Tehran-Beijing cooperation in international bodies, describing the joint fight against efforts to politicize the issue of human rights and against interference in the internal affairs of other countries as a key aspect of this cooperation. Amir Abdollahian spoke of the illegal use of sanctions by Western governments against independent nations. He said fighting this issue is important for the purpose of helping stability and preventing crises.

Wang, for his part, extended the Chinese president’s warm greetings to President Raisi and appreciated the Iranian side’s participation in the third conference of Afghanistan’s neighbors.

Wang then underscored the need for cooperation and close consultations between Tehran and Beijing to make their strategic 25-year pact operational and also the need for cooperation in international bodies.

The two foreign ministers also exchanged views on the latest developments in the Vienna talks and underlined the need to fight against unilateral and illegitimate sanctions imposed by some Western countries.

An inclusive government will guarantee security in Afghanistan

Also, the Iranian foreign minister met with the Taliban’s top diplomat Amir Khani Muttaqi. Amir Abdollahian and Amir Khan Muttaqi, acting Foreign Minister of Afghanistan’s ruling system, held talks over issues of mutual interest on the sidelines of the conference of the foreign ministers of Afghanistan’s neighbors in Tuxi, China.

In the meeting, the Iranian foreign minister said the formation of an inclusive government with the participation of all ethnic groups will guarantee security, stability and development of Afghanistan. Amir Abdollahian then underlined the need for the formation of an inclusive government in Afghanistan.

The top Iranian diplomat also said Islam and the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) underline the necessity of observing the rights of women. He described women’s right to education at all levels and also their social participation as a highly important issue.

Amir Khan Muttaqi, for his part, promised in the meeting that Afghanistan will not be a launching pad for threats against neighbors and stressed the need to fight terrorism.

He also said the water treaty between Iran and Afghanistan must be implemented.

During the meeting on Afghanistan, Iran called for the return of tranquility to Afghanistan. The Iranian foreign minister expressed hope a “calm Afghanistan” will be established in Iran’s vicinity. 

“Neighboring countries should play an important role in establishing peace and stability in Afghanistan because peace and stability in Afghanistan, just like insecurity, can have a direct impact on its neighbors,” said Hossein Amir Abdollahian in the meeting of Afghanistan’s neighboring countries in China, which also brought together delegates from the Taliban, Indonesia and Qatar.

“In the previous meeting, the Islamic Republic of Iran put forward two clear proposals. First, that we should reinforce mechanisms required to help promote security in Afghanistan, and that a clear security mechanism should be devised within the framework of the existing organizations or as an independent body to coordinate policies to fight terrorism and to exchange experience and information to contribute security both in Afghanistan and in the whole region,” he explained.

“Our second proposal is that a regional mechanism as well as a financial fund should be established to help Afghan people, one which would contribute to Afghanistan’s reconstruction and development,” the minister said.

“Our lingering concern is the threat of terrorism spreading from within Afghanistan, the expansion of Daesh and its recruitment inside Afghanistan as well as in some regional countries along with moves that Daesh makes to train its operatives and further expand toward the northern areas of Afghanistan,” he added.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran is concerned over and increasing number of Afghan refugees. Over the past seven months, around one million Afghan women, children and men entered Iran, and now the number of Afghan refugees who are our guests has risen to around 5 million. There is grave concern in this regard, especially at a time when international organizations pay little attention to refugees in countries neighboring Afghanistan,” he said.

Amir Abdollahian: “To us, women’s role in Afghanistan is very important”

The foreign minister also touched upon the necessity of women playing a role in Afghanistan.

“To us, women’s role in Afghanistan is very important. Islam is a progressive religion and that of mercy, which believes women have every right to be present in different areas. It is necessary to once again stress the importance of women’s role in the Muslim Afghan community,” he added.

Elsewhere in his remarks, the top diplomat referred to the issue of unfreezing Afghanistan’s assets and the United States’ claim of contributing to Afghanistan’s reconstruction.

“It is important to unfreeze Afghan people’s assets outside the country in order to serve them. The United States’ occupation of Afghanistan 20 years ago, and now its confiscation of Afghanistan’s assets, are inappropriate moves. The U.S. occupied Afghanistan for 20 years, but failed to build even a small room as a clinic for Afghan people. But today, the Americans speak of reconstructing Afghanistan. If they were really interested in helping, we wouldn’t be witnessing the deplorable humanitarian situation in Afghanistan,” he regretted.

“All the pledges we make today are related to an important issue. Afghanistan needs the establishment of an all-inclusive government represented by all groups. The formation of a government guarantees stability, security, progress and welfare in Afghanistan. We have not come together today to decide for the Afghan people; rather, we are here to help all Afghan people have a bright and prosperous future full of welfare,” he said.

The Iranian foreign minister continued his consultations on Afghanistan with other foreign ministers participating in the diplomatic gathering including Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. In this meeting, Amir Abdollahian underlined the need to continue political talks between Moscow and Kiev, ruling out war as the solution to crises in Ukraine, Yemen, Afghanistan and so on.

For his part, the Russian foreign minister referred to his country’s willingness to cooperate with neighbors especially Iran in all fields. Lavrov said relations between Tehran and Moscow have special significance and underscored Russia’s readiness to expand cooperation with Iran. In the meeting, the foreign ministers of Iran and the Russian Federation also discussed other issues including the trend of developments in Afghanistan and the Tehran-Moscow cooperation in this regard, the speeding up of Iran’s accession to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the latest state of the Vienna talks and close cooperation between the delegations of Iran and Russia during the negotiations and also their cooperation in the Caspian Sea region.

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