Chinese Embassy Spokesman Zhang Yuanyuan
Washington, D.C.
September 15, 2001

Recently, some newspapers in the United States published reports on the so-called ties between China and Afghanistan's Taliban, an allegation that the Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman denied in a statement today.

Ever since the outbreak of civil war in Afghanistan, China has closed down its embassy in Kabul and stationed no permanent diplomatic personnel in that country. Neither the allegation that we periodically send diplomats to Kabul, nor that we help build a phone network and advise on construction of a dam in Afghanistan, nor that we have signed an agreement on economic and technical assistance with the Taliban, has any truth in it.

As a neighbor of Afghanistan, China naturally follows the developments in that country with concern. Having no selfish interest and always ready to provide good offices, all we want is a peaceful settlement at an early date. We do not interfere in the internal affairs of Afghanistan. We have not established any form of official relations with the Taliban. The Afghan embassy of the anti-Taliban coalition is still operating normally in Beijing. China supports the United Nations in its central role of seeking a peaceful solution of the Afghan problem. China also supports all efforts that are conducive to a peaceful settlement of the problem.