- Intelligence sources say China is preparing to recognize the Taliban’s legitimacy
- Islamist militants now control two-thirds of Afghanistan after military blitz
- They are closing in on Kabul following the withdrawal of US troops
- China has close ties with Pakistan, which some say is aiding the Taliban
- Beijing seeks to expand trade and resource extraction in post-US Afghanistan
- Taliban on Friday captured Herat in the west and Kandahar in the south
- They now hold two-thirds of the country and half of the provincial capitals
China is reportedly prepared to recognize the Taliban as the legitimate rulers of Afghanistan if they succeed in toppling the Western-backed government in Kabul.
According to U.S. and foreign intelligence sources cited by U.S. News & World Report, Chinese Communist Party leaders are preparing to formalize their relationship with the Islamist insurgents.
It comes as the Taliban control nearly two-thirds of Afghanistan including half of the 34 provincial capitals following a relentless military blitz, with the group closing in on Kabul.
Recognition from Beijing would come as a blow to President Joe Biden’s plan to use the threat of international isolation to force the Taliban back into talks for a political settlement.