State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi on July 27 met with Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar in Tianjin, political chief of Afghanistan’s Taliban.

The Afghan Taliban, as a critical military and political force in the country, is expected to play an important role in the peace, reconciliation and reconstruction process of Afghanistan, Wang said.

He called on the Afghan Taliban to put their national interests first and foremost, hold high the banner of peace talks, establish the goal of peace, create a positive image and adopt an inclusive policy.

The sudden withdrawal of forces by the United States and NATO from Afghanistan marks the failure of the United States’ Afghanistan policy, and Afghan people now face an important opportunity to stabilize and develop their own country, he said.

Wang urged all factions and ethnic groups in Afghanistan to stay united, truly implement the “Afghan-led and Afghan-owned” principle, promote the peace and reconciliation process in Afghanistan to achieve substantive results as soon as possible, and independently establish an inclusive political structure in line with Afghanistan’s own national conditions.

China, as Afghanistan’s largest neighbor, always respects Afghanistan’s sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity, sticks to not interfering in Afghanistan’s internal affairs and adopts the friendly policy in view of the entire Afghan people, he said.

“Afghanistan belongs to the Afghan people, and the country’s future and destiny should be in the hands of its people,” he added.

The East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM), an international terrorist group listed by the UN Security Council, poses direct threats to China’s national security and territorial integrity, and it is the common responsibility of the international community to fight against it, he said.

Wang called on the Afghan Taliban to draw a clear line from ETIM and other terrorist groups, and resolutely and effectively crack down on them, so as to remove obstacles and create favorable conditions for regional peace, stability and development.

Baradar expressed his gratitude for the opportunity to visit China.

“China has always been a trustworthy friend of the Afghan people,” he said, expressing appreciation for China’s fair and positive role in the peace and reconciliation process in Afghanistan.

The Afghan Taliban, with sincerity for achieving peace, is willing to work with all parties to establish an inclusive political structure in Afghanistan that is accepted by all Afghan people and protects human rights as well as the rights and interests of women and children, Baradar said.

Baradar said that the Afghan Taliban would absolutely not allow any forces to do anything harmful to China in Afghanistan’s territory.

Baradar said that the Afghan Taliban held that Afghanistan should develop friendly relations with neighboring countries and the international community.

The Afghan Taliban hoped that China would be more involved in Afghanistan’s peace and reconstruction process, and play a bigger role in the country’s future reconstruction and economic development, Baradar said, adding that the Afghan Taliban would make its own efforts in creating a favorable investment environment.