As the Taliban takes control of Afghanistan, China and Tajikistan started a two-day joint anti-terrorism drill to strengthen military preparedness.
The drill conducted in Tajik capital Dushanbe is organized by China's Ministry of Public Security and Tajikistan's Ministry of Internal Affairs.
The changes of Afghan situation have caused concerns to its neighboring countries over instability and terrorism, wrote China’s semi-official Global Times.
In letters addressed to Rahimzoda Ramazon Hamro, Minister of Tajikistan International Affairs, and Saimumin Yatimov, chairman of the State Committee for National Security, China's State Councilor and Minister of Public Security Zhao Kezhi wrote, “Currently, the international situation has experienced dramatic changes and the regional anti-terrorism situation is not optimistic. The anti-terrorism drill will improve the anti-terrorism forces' coordination for combat readiness and strengthen combat capability as well as show the two countries' determination to fight against terrorism.”
Zhao said that China's Ministry of Public Security is willing to have further closer cooperation with Tajikistan's State Committee for National Security to strengthen cooperation on frontier defense and cooperation under the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.
Taliban fighters have already taken control of Afghanistan’s borders with Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
Tajikistan participated in large-scale military exercises with Russia and Uzbekistan at the Harb-Maidon training ground, just 20km away from the Afghan border. It saw the participation of over 2,500 servicemen of which 1,800 were from Russia. About 500 pieces of weapons and military equipment were involved.
Dushanbe has agreed to accept up to 100,000 refugees from Afghanistan and has already started making provisions for their arrival. Reports indicate that approximately 1,600 Afghan soldiers fled to Tajikistan in the last week. This includes Afghan President, Ashraf Ghani. Over 40 passenger flights took off on Sunday evening from Kabul to neighbouring Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.