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China’s President Accepts Ambassadorial Credentials of Taliban Representative

Xi Jinping welcomes Asadullah Bilal Karimi. From X

Yesterday, Jan. 31, Chinese President Xi Jinping welcomed Asadullah Bilal Karimi, the Taliban-appointed Afghan ambassador, in a formal ceremony at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People, along with envoys from Cuba, Iran, Pakistan, and 38 other countries, who also presented their credentials.

Xi’s acceptance amounts to the first official recognition of the interim Taliban government by a major nation, some analysts and former diplomats say. Wang Wenbin, a spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry, told media in his Jan. 31 press briefing that “China believes that Afghanistan should not be excluded from the international community,” and that “It is normal diplomatic arrangement for China to receive the new ambassador to China sent by the Afghan interim government and for him to present his credentials to the Chinese leader.”

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