The US-China rivalry is set to found new grounds in war-torn Afghanistan as China is building a modern military outpost in Afghanistan. Beijing is keen on having a high tech military facility in Afghanistan with the purpose to counter terrorism. The base is being set up in the largely isolated Wakhan corridor and China may send hundreds of troops to this base.
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Since 2014 China has escalated its participation in the peace process of Afghanistan in the pursuit of regional stability. The Wakhan corridor is a narrow corridor between China and Afghanistan and China will be completely funding this military base where the Afghan troops will be trained for counter-terrorism operations in Afghanistan. While the US troops are already present in Afghanistan, Beijing’s decision to send its troops might not go well with Washington especially when the US and China are already standing on the verge of a war.
A battalion usually has more than 500 troops and China is expected to send a complete battalion to the Wakhan region once the military camp is completely set up. The Wakhan corridor connects China’s Xinjiang to the Badhakshan Province in Afghanistan. This military camp will be China’s first military presence in Afghanistan which has been in a state of war since 2001. China does realise the fact that the security of Afghanistan must be looked after by the regional powers otherwise the entire region’s security could be compromised once the US troops withdraw from Afghanistan. China aims to participate in Afghanistan’s peace process in larger capabilities and hence it is doing everything possible in this direction.
China shares good relations with the bordering nations of Afghanistan as well especially, Pakistan and that gives China a geopolitical advantage to capitalise upon. Terrorism poses a threat to the entire region and hence China has stepped up efforts to eliminate terror from the entire region and hence the military base in Afghanistan.