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Editorial: China, India two global giants; Afghanistan benefits

Indeed, Afghanistan has been enjoying warmest relations with two global giants—China and India, and the relations have been all the time affectionate and friendly. In the 21st century, relations have improved significantly with giving hope to the war-hit country, Afghanistan toward having a brighter future with support of New Delhi and Beijing. There is no doubt that China and India are two global giants. If they work together, the world will benefit in general, but Afghanistan in particular due to its geopolitical location. Kabul’s relations with these two big Asian Countries go back to the history of Silk Road-hundreds of years’ ago. A decade of democracy has opened up Afghan society, and India’s and China’s cooperation have helped develop sustainable links around a shared vision. India is already the sixth largest donor to Afghanistan. It has been involved in diverse development projects in infrastructure, education, water management, power production, agriculture and other productive areas. China is also in the same path, helping Afghanistan in every area. We need China’s financial resources, construction industry, and political leverage. China’s role in regional stability is very much crucial. The good thing is that Kabul and Beijing, bypassing Pakistan have already built a strong partnership based on mutual interests. With the recent surge in direct diplomacy and high level bilateral visits between Afghanistan and China, there is an emerging hope that such visits must go beyond diplomatic niceties and be based on strong foundation to lead the region toward durable peace and stability. The current ongoing war in Afghanistan could be ended in shortest time when China, India, and surely Russia work together with Afghanistan and the US-led international community in the country. Pressurizing terror sponsor states and establishing durable peace and stability in Afghanistan is the solution to the shared problems and interests of all at a time. However, as a rising powers, China and India cannot and should not tolerate an unstable Afghanistan and terror sponsor states as well in its neighborhood. Surely, a trouble and unstable neighborhood infested with extremists and regional proxy terrorist groups is probably the biggest impediment to China and India’s rise to peaceful and responsible powers. Unfortunately, if their interest clash, and there is friction between them, then like two elephants all that comes in between will be crushed. In this case, it is the small countries that will suffer. There are already examples of both kinds. India and China have been cooperating against piracy in the Indian Ocean. Their navies have worked together to fight the pirates. On the other hand their interests have clashed in South China Sea. Fortunately, on the international stage they often find themselves on the same side, for instance on the climate issue. Moreover, in bilaterally relations, they have a trade which exceeds $100 billion annually, maybe more than that. Furthermore, they are looking to invest in a big way in each other’s country. Not turning blind eye that there is both cooperation and competition between them. Therefore, when they act together they are a force for the good. In that sense both can find ample scope for positive cooperation in Afghanistan. We, as Afghan masses do believe that China and India have never viewed Afghanistan as a competing ground in the Great Game. India and China is Afghanistan’s most reliable regional partner and the largest contributor of development assistance in the country. Afghan masses want these two important partners in the region to help them in establishing peace and stability in the country which could be done through pressing and countering terror sponsor states and encouraging Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.

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