China ends Taliban's foreign diplomatic impasse, assigns ambassador
China became the first nation to assign an ambassador to Afghanistan since the Taliban took government in 2021.
China became the first country to officially appoint a new envoy to Afghanistan since the Taliban took government in 2021 after its ambassador presented credentials on Wednesday.
No foreign government has officially recognized the Taliban as of yet, and China did not indicate whether this appointment signified a broader move toward formal recognition of the party.
"This is the normal rotation of China's ambassador to Afghanistan, and is intended to continue advancing dialogue and cooperation between China and Afghanistan," China's foreign ministry said. "China's policy towards Afghanistan is clear and consistent."
In a formal ceremony, Taliban's acting Prime Minister Mohammad Hassan Akhund accepted the credentials of the new Chinese envoy, as confirmed by Bilal Karimi, the Taliban administration's deputy spokesperson.
Zhao Xing, the new Chinese envoy, is the first ambassador from any country to assume this post since the United States and its allies ended their occupation of the Asian country. Zhao replaced former ambassador Wang Yu who assumed the role in 2019 and concluded his tenure last month.
While there are other diplomats in Kabul holding the title of ambassador, they were all appointed before the Taliban assumed the country's authority. On the other hand, some countries and international organizations, such as Pakistan and the European Union, have a designation that doesn't necessitate the presentation of ambassadorial credentials to the host nation.
The Taliban returned to power in Afghanistan on August 15, 2021, after the US-led military force withdrew from the country.
However, the aftermath of the withdrawal has left Afghanistan facing economic, humanitarian, and human rights crises, exacerbated by the cessation of foreign financial support from Western nations.
Additionally, there have been controversial actions such as the seizure of Afghanistan's sovereign assets deposited in the United States, with some of these funds being directed towards compensating 9/11 survivors, while the remainder is being held as leverage for influencing Afghanistan's domestic and foreign policies according to American interests.