China Seeks Role in Afghanistan

    Chinese Paramilitary soldiers train outside their barracks in Beijing on March 19, 2012. Military spending in Asia will top that in Europe for the first time this year, the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) said in its annual assessment of the strength of the world's armies. China leads the way in Asia and is engaged in a modernisation programme of its forces and military hardware financed by its rapid economic development.  AFP PHOTO/Mark RALSTON (Photo credit should read MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)

    Mark Ralston, AFP / Getty Images

    All signs are that Afghanistan will retain its strategic importance even as the United States prepares to withdraw troops in the coming years. Afghan officials say their country will sign a new agreement with the Chinese government in the coming days that will strengthen the relationship between the two countries. Afghanistan has also signed agreements with the United States, India, and the United Kingdom. “The president of Afghanistan will be meeting the president of China in Beijing, and what will happen is the elevation of our existing, solid relationship to a new level, to a strategic level,” Afghan Foreign Ministry spokesman Janan Musazai told reporters.

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