Rumors swirl in Kabul over attack on Chinese-operated hotel

On December 12, a minimum of 3 unknown armed males opened fire inside the multi-story Kabul Longan hotel, which lies in the heart of the capital of Afghanistan.

The Islamic State Khorasan Province (IS-K) group declared duty for the attack, which left 3 of the wrongdoers dead and 21 individuals hurt. China’s foreign ministry stated 5 of its nationals were amongst the injured, and has recommended its residents in Afghanistan to leave the nation as quickly as possible.

The hotel structure has popular signs with its Chinese name (喀布尔桂园酒店). “The hotel was regularly gone to by immigrants, mainly by Chinese diplomats and Chinese entrepreneurs,” a source in Kabul informed The China Project on the condition of privacy. “It was a guesthouse for Chinese nationals.”

The hotel is run by a Chinese individual, according to Chinese media reports

China’s increased existence under Taliban guideline

China has continued to increase its financial investment, trade, and organization activities in Afghanistan given that the Taliban pertained to power in August2021 Chinese organizations are likewise broadening their strategies in the nation this year, after the Taliban authorized the very first Sino-Afghan joint task to establish a $216 million commercial park on the borders of Kabul in April.

The park will consist of joint jobs on building, the production of structure products, and mining operations– an location of specific interest to Chinese companies since of Afghanistan’s huge deposits of copper and lithium, both of which are utilized to make things like electrical automobiles and clean-energy storage systems.

But maybe more vital than China’s financial interest in Afghanistan are its security worries. China shares a 47- mile border with Afghanistan, and Beijing has actually long feared that the conflict-torn nation might end up being a sanctuary for minority Uyghur activists who might cross over from Xinjiang. The Taliban has actually ensured Beijing that Uyghurs militants would not be enabled to utilize Afghanistan as a base, in exchange for China’s financial assistance and financial investment, Beijing stays on high alert

This is one reason lots of residents presume that the Kabul Longan hotel was more than simply a location of lodging for Chinese entrepreneurs.

hotel or spy store?

” Cameras and other security gadgets set up inside the hotel make it a sort of intelligence system,” according to The China Project’s source, echoing opinion from a Twitter account called Zhenghe Forum, which commented: “Unlike other hotels, this hotel has lots of security systems such as electronic cameras inside. Do not comprehend why [they] set up [ed] numerous electronic cameras in a [n] confined structure.” The account likewise states if “you contact us to inquire about the rate, the hotel asks you to send your passport details [regardless] of whether you will remain or not.”

” Presently, Chinese are not simply here for service activities. A few of them are taken part in tracking the location of the Uyghur militants in Afghanistan,” the source in Kabul informed The China Project.

Why would the Islamic State attack Chinese interests?

No matter what has in fact been going on at the Kabul Longan hotel, there is a clear factor for IS-K militants to assault it. As The China Project’s Kabul source put it, “Chinese were targeted to frighten them so that there was intergovernmental stress. IS-K, an arch competitor to the Taliban, does not desire the Chinese to invest or do organization in the nation under the Taliban federal government.”

Michael Kugelman, director of the South Asia Institute at the Washington D.C.-based Wilson Center, verified this theory to Reuters: “The concept is to press possible partners– the couple of the Taliban can depend on– far from the Taliban,” he stated.

source

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