Next Afghan govt not only would continue present ties with China, but would expand it more, President Karzai

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KABUL: President Hamid Karzai on Monday hoped the new Afghan government would explore ways of further cementing relations and expanding cooperation with China in different fields.
Karzai expressed the view in an interview with Radio China after his arrival in Beijing to participate in the two-day Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building in Asia (CICA), to be held in Shanghai.
The international forum seeks to strengthen cooperation in building peace, security and stability in Asia. China has been chosen as CICA president for the period from 2014 to 2016.
Strengthened ties between Afghanistan and China were of immense importance and it was in Kabul’s interest to further buttress bilateral contacts, he believed.
“China has friendly ties with Afghanistan. The Chinese avoided a policy with a negative impact on Afghanistan. The people of Afghanistan are proud of their friendship with China. We will explore avenues of bolstering security, economic, culture and trade ties,” he remarked. Referring to the CICA moot, Karzai said the event had great importance in terms of promoting trade and commerce in the region. He hoped the conference would strengthen efforts against terrorism and for bolstering security. He reiterated support for China’s efforts to revive the ancient Silk Route. “The Silk Route is of pivotal importance and its revival will benefit Afghanistan and the region at large,” he added.
Replying to a query, he said Afghanistan was interested in forging close ties with the US, based on both countries’ interests. The region should not plunge into insecurity after signing of a bilateral security agreement (BSA) with the US, he explained.

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