Joe Biden slammed for going on vacation as Russia, China swoop in to back Taliban rule
China’s foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said China 'respects the wishes and choices of the Afghan people'
China, Russia, Pakistan and Turkey appear set to formally recognize Taliban rule in Afghanistan after the fundamentalist group seized the Presidential Palace in Kabul on Sunday, August 15, and President Ashraf Ghani left the city for Tajikistan, as per news reports.
As per the Daily Mail, while many global powers are reluctant to recognize the rule of the militant group, Beijing and Islamabad could form closer ties with them. As per the South China Morning Post, China’s foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said China “respects the wishes and choices of the Afghan people” and hoped the Taliban’s declarations that it would transition the country under an “open, inclusive Islamic government” and ensure the safety of Afghan citizens and foreign missions would be carried out accordingly.
“China expects these statements to be implemented to ensure the situation in Afghanistan achieves a smooth transition, curbs all kinds of terrorist and criminal activities, and allows the Afghan people to be far away from war and to rebuild their beautiful homeland,” she said.
SCMP reported that while Beijing has not “explicitly said it will recognize the Taliban as the new leaders of Afghanistan”, analysts say it will “inevitably continue engaging with the militant group” which has described China as a “friend” to Afghanistan. Hua said China has “maintained contact and communication with the Taliban” and that it respected the country‘s sovereignty and its various domestic parties.
“Afghanistan’s Taliban has expressed many times a desire for good relations with China, with an expectation that China will take part in Afghanistan’s rebuilding and development process, and will not allow any forces to use Afghanistan’s soil to harm China,” she said. “We welcome this.”
The Chinese embassy in Afghanistan is reportedly continuing to operate as normal, and its ambassador and embassy staff will remain in their posts, the report said. In China, a series of photos were published last month by state media showing Foreign Minister Wang Yi standing shoulder to shoulder with visiting Taliban officials decked out in traditional tunic and turban in Tianjin.
“China will play a more important role in Afghanistan, but this will have to wait until the security situation is more stable,” Du Youkang, a former diplomat and international affairs researcher at Shanghai’s Fudan University, said. “For the Taliban, China is Afghanistan’s largest and most powerful neighbor, and they want to secure Chinese aid and investments because they know they will not be able to stay in power without economic development. For China, the Taliban is a political force in Afghanistan that cannot be ignored, whether it is in power or not. You cannot ignore it, so under these circumstances, engaging with the Taliban is better than not engaging with them.”
The Kremlin, reportedly, said there are no plans to evacuate the Russian Embassy in Kabul, as well. Russian state media has reported that the Taliban has promised to guarantee the safety of its diplomatic staff. “The organization has good relations with Russia and a policy in general to ensure safe conditions for the functioning of the Russian and other embassies,” Suhail Shaheen, a spokesman for the Taliban's political office, reportedly said.
While all this is in play, US President Joe Biden has been criticized by his political opponents for supposedly vacationing. The president, who is reportedly at Camp David while chaos unfolds in Afghanistan, was lambasted by Republican leaders for “going on vacation” on Sunday. Former President Donald Trump called for Biden's resignation. “First thing's first, why is Joe Biden on vacation, why hasn't his administration taken a single question? This is an embarrassment,” Ohio Representative Jim Jordan told Fox News.
“It is time for Joe Biden to resign in disgrace for what he has allowed happening to Afghanistan, along with the tremendous surge in COVID, the Border catastrophe, the destruction of energy independence, and our crippled economy,” Trump said in a statement. “It shouldn't be a big deal, because he wasn't elected legitimately in the first place.” Colorado Republican Representative Lauren Boebert said, “No person who calls themselves the President of the United States should be on vacation while the world crumbles down around them. The dereliction of duty continues.”
Others online criticized Biden as well. One tweet said, “Biden remained on vacation in Maryland as #Taliban entered #Kabul for a takeover that he said last month was ‘highly unlikely.’ His presidency is an unmitigated disaster.” Another tweet said, “If you think Afghanistan is being take by the Taliban, I have a bridge to sell you. It's going to China. And Biden, along with several other big names, are suddenly going on vacation? Something big is coming.” One person wrote, “Biden’s on vacation right now while China is calling the shots. 5000 of our most skilled troops are about to get completely mauled by the Taliban in Kabul. What a f***ing disaster.”
‘Commended’ - for what?— Shabnam Nasimi (@NasimiShabnam) August 15, 2021
Biden remained on vacation in Maryland as #Taliban entered #Kabul for a takeover that he said last month was “highly unlikely.”
His presidency is an unmitigated disaster. https://t.co/2EFGSJ768b
If you think Afghanistan is being take by the Taliban, I have a bridge to sell you. It's going to China. And Biden, along with several other bug names, are suddenly going on vacation? Something big is coming.— Alex Jimenez (@chicogrk78) August 14, 2021
Biden’s on vacation right now while China is calling the shots. 5000 of our most skilled troops are about to get completely mauled by the Taliban in Kabul. What a fucking disaster.— Ed Gary (@Ed__Gary) August 15, 2021