Academic journal article Quarterly Journal of Chinese Studies

Stability in Afghanistan through Employment of Regional Development Force Led by China under UN Ambit 1

Academic journal article Quarterly Journal of Chinese Studies

Stability in Afghanistan through Employment of Regional Development Force Led by China under UN Ambit 1

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

Afghanistan, because of its geo-strategic location, holds a significant politico-economic value as a vital trade route linking energy rich Central Asian Republics (CARs) and Indian Ocean through Pakistan and Iran. Chinese regulated Wakhan Corridor, being North Eastern part of Afghanistan, which has been used as a part of an ancient Silk Route. However since the Russian invasion of Afghanistan in December 1979 and the U.S invasion in 2001, this area of politico-economic manouevre value is in turmoil which failed any trade through this narrow passage in existing scenario. It is visualized that even after complete withdrawal of the U.S led NATO forces from Afghanistan, much desired stability for economic development is not likely to be achieved due to Afghan culture and strategies of extra regional and regional power to pursue their interests. Apart from the trade, much desired peace and stability is also necessary for social development of Afghan Nation. In present scenario, considering the interests of extra regional powers, the much desired stability and a pragmatic development of Afghanistan seems to be a difficult proposition unless the involvement of a balancing force; therefore the employment of UN Regional Development and Peace Keeping Force led by China appears to be a suitable option. It is important that employment UN forces in Afghanistan should include troops from regional countries as they share common demography, culture and interests. UN Peace Keeping Forces have performed well to meet the objectives of stability and peace in four major continents, even at present, the UN is performing fifteen peace keeping missions across the globe (Current Peace Keeping Operation, 2014). In the early 90's, UN successfully launched a peace keeping mission in Chechnya closer to Afghanistan which should serve as a model. However is recommended that the troops involved should be from neighbouring countries for the reasons mentioned above (United Nations Peacekeeping Operations, 2014). It is visualized that under the UN aegis, regional countries can and will take care of stability in Afghanistan to meet their interest as they are doing so in Africa, including China and Pakistan. If needed, additional troops from other regional counties can be employed with in short span of time.

AFGHAN DEPENDENCY ON CHINA

Despite being a land locked country, Afghanistan has been a part of the Silk Route legacy as its Wakhan Corridor leads to China which had been used for linking West with China via the Silk Route. Afghanistan is attached to Badakhshan Region (Tajikistan) in the north, China in the north east and Pakistan in the east. It is also linked to the Caspian Region via the Oxus River. In 1949, Chinese Leader Mao Zedong, in pursuit of his communist conquest, blocked Wakhan Corridor at Wakhjir Pass. Almost 80 percent of Afghanistan consists of rugged mountains with poor communication infrastructure. Apart from terrain, its ethnic tribal culture, queer demography, and the concerns of regional and global powers kept the social development as a fallacy. Ethnically divided Afghan warlords have always dominated the weak governments and have continuously struggled to influence each other. Such circumstances never allowed any government to formulate and implement foreign, trade and defence policies due to which the government could not concentrate on social development. The result of which is that presently the social, educational and communication infrastructure in Afghanistan is almost non-existent and its people mostly depend on Pakistan for food, medical and trade facilities. Presently, China is involved in many social and industrial development projects in Afghanistan, so the proposed Chinese involvement in Afghanistan will not only aid to the social and industrial development but will also add to its stability, hence allowing China to use Afghanistan as an alternate route to Indian Ocean; apart from or in combination with Karakoram Highway through Pakistan. …

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