Shanghai Cooperation Organization welcomes Iran and prepares to host Afghanistan

The security of neighboring countries is expected to be the focus of the new government in Kabul, including stability and economic concerns.

Immediately after the end of the American occupation of Afghanistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan withdrew their objections and accepted Iran as a full member. Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). Iran has been an observer member since 2005 and looks forward to expanding security, intelligence and economic cooperation among the SCO members. Iran’s potential is beneficial to all SCO members, especially when the port opens Chabahar : it is being built as a gateway to the east and west of the Caspian Sea within international transport corridor North-South.(INSTC). Chabahar connects Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan on the one hand. On the other hand, it connects these countries with the west in Azerbaijan, Turkey and Europe, and through the Iranian port – with Africa and India. This allows Central Asia to find more efficient and productive sales markets, especially since “ Silk road »To Afghanistan passes through Central Asia to the Black Sea and the Middle East. These connections are what Afghanistan needs; restoring and exchanging its potential reserves of electricity, gas and oil, as well as huge reserves of minerals, making it less dependent on the help and conditions of the West, especially the United States.

This densely populated and interconnected Eurasian region is considered a direct threat to US hegemony, which began to crumble after the US was defeated in the wars it unleashed in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. These US wars have shown their futility and the impossibility of achieving US goals in any of these countries. The United States is no longer described as a superpower, but as “ great power ”, Which does not pay much attention to its Western strategic allies, who seem to be tired of paying the bills for US intervention in World War II.

European states react strongly because the US does not ask their opinion on strategic and partnership issues such as withdrawal from Afghanistan. The role of most European states was to be loyal supporters, coordinating US policies and military plans for decades, even to the detriment of their own political, economic and security interests. Even if they do not pose a threat to Europe, European states pushed stand against China and Russia; and comply with US sanctions against Iran in line with the US President’s agenda. Recently European and non-European The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) member states involved in Afghanistan have become embroiled in the chaotic and bloody disruption of the Kabul airport only because the US decided to leave in a hurry.

Immediately after the Taliban took control of everything 34 provinces Afghanistan, Russian Secretary General for National Security Nikolai Patrushev announced to his Iranian counterpart, Admiral Ali Shamkhani, that “the Islamic Republic will become a full member of the SCO on the first try. September. “This indicates that the SCO is preparing for a more significant future role in Central and West Asia.

Creation ” Shanghai five »The SCO (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Russia and China) was established on June 15, 2001 in Shanghai, China, and Pakistan and India joined in 2017. The organization aims to build trust and cooperation in trade, economy, culture, tourism, transport, energy, foreign policy and environmental protection to maintain security, peace and development in Asia.

Iran provides support and various windows to the continents through the port of Chabahar overlooking the Gulf of Oman. There is a port on its territory Bandar-e-Anzali , the only free zone on the Caspian Sea. In addition, Iran has maritime links with the Caspian basin, including the Azerbaijani port of Baku , Turkmen port of Turkmenbashi and Kazakh Aktau port … In addition, Iran has established a railway line leading north and then to the southern port of Chabahar, from where there is direct freight connections with the Indian port of Mumbai.

However, the US continues to impose harsh sanctions on Iran, China and Russia to slow their economic development and improve China’s ties to Central and West Asia. US President Joe Biden fears the expansion of the Shanghai Organization – mainly China and Iran – which is expected to move closer to Afghanistan in the near future to forge adequate cooperation to alleviate the country’s difficult economic problems. At the moment, Afghanistan continues to depend primarily on Western humanitarian aid.

Afghanistan’s neighbors have already taken the first steps to meet the country’s needs: Iran resumed exports gasoline and diesel to Afghanistan. Moreover, although China has stated that will define a priori type of relationship with the new Afghanistan, he met with the Taliban to research and invest in precious metals and minerals in Afghanistan. Afghanistan possesses the largest reserves of metals and minerals, as well as energy resources, including copper, coal, iron, cobalt, (liquid metal) mercury, gold, uranium, zinc, precious stones, talc, sulfur, lithium, thorium, oil and gas. Former Minister of Afghanistan Wahidullah Shahrani appreciated the cost of mineral deposits is from 1 to 3 trillion dollars. Moreover, the SCO members want to include Afghanistan in the $ 900 billion Silk Road project now that the US has ended its occupation.

In the past, Afghanistan signed a contract with China for the extraction of copper from “Mies Aynak” (which means copper deposits in the Dari language, one of the official languages ​​of Afghanistan). The copper mine is estimated to contain about 450 million tonnes of copper, amounting to about USD 50 billion … However, work at this mine was interrupted on several occasions due to security instabilities. After the Taliban have taken control of all the provinces, one of the most important steps: the new government will have to face economic problems and renew the agreement with China to provide economic, financial and resources for the development of Afghanistan. It is expected that the Taliban will be responsible for border security with China.

China’s Xinjiang region, home to Uyghur Muslims, is 76 kilometers of the border with Afghanistan. Beijing wants to ensure that the Taliban will prevent the movement of East Pakistan and Muslim Uyghurs. They fought the Taliban and al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and Syria.

Positive signals come not only from Iran and China: Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov voiced the first favorable position, stating that “Russia does not support the Panjshir province, which has refused to obey the new reality.” There appears to have been little appetite for support for the Panjshir resistance, which fell due to the Taliban’s determination to begin to rule the entire country with all its tribes and ethnic groups. Iran, China and Russia want to ensure that Afghanistan does not become a platform for launching jihadist insurgency attacks on border countries. The security of neighboring countries is expected to be the focus of the new government in Kabul, including stability and economic concerns. The Taliban provided countries with sufficient guarantees to make a decision to keep their diplomatic missions in working order (China, Russia and Iran) in Kabul and their consulates in other provinces.

China, Russia and Iran will not allow any empire to return to occupy Afghanistan or any attempt to destabilize it from afar. The United States suffered a military defeat; however, he has other means, non-governmental organizations, to re-enter Afghanistan for humanitarian reasons to support “ needs of Afghanistan “. Therefore, the neighboring countries of Afghanistan will leave the past behind and support the new Afghan government in building a state. This vital support will provide the SCO with additional strength that will reduce the US role in Central Asia to below current levels.

A source

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Russian Athens, but rather express the opinion solely of its author.

Translation by R.A.

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