China and Afghanistan to create a counter-terrorist mountain brigade

China and Afghanistan are working in close coordination on setting up a counter-terrorist mountain brigade in the northern Badakhshan region. According to a report of the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post, China is to build its first military base in Afghanistan for hundreds of troops carrying out counter-terrorism training missions across the border from its western Xinjiang region.

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In this picture from India's Wion News, a Chinese Norinco VP 11a mine resistant vehicle patrols in the Afghanistan-China border region. (Picture source Wion News)

Chinese military personnel won’t be stationed at the Beijing-funded counter-terrorism camp being built in Afghanistan, the Afghan envoy to China, Janan Mosazai, said on Wednesday.

Rejecting the report as false and baseless, Mosazai said: “The Chinese side is providing assistance to Afghanistan so that we can set up a mountain brigade in the north of Afghanistan in order to enhance our counter-terrorism operations in the region.”

There will be no Chinese military personnel of any kind involved in Afghan soil, said mosazai. China also denied the report.£

China wants to help Afghanistan to fight Islamic State Group in the country but also separatist militants from Xinjiang's Uighurs, fighting and training inside Afghanistan.

A Russian news agency reported earlier this year that Beijing would finance a new base in Badakhshan after the two countries agreed to cooperate on fighting terrorism. According the Military Times website, Chinese ground troops are operating inside Afghanistan, conducting joint counter-terror patrols with Afghan forces along a 50-mile stretch of their shared border. late last year, India's Wion News published photos claiming to show Chinese military armored vehicle VP11 MRAP in a region called Little Pamir, a barren plateau near the border.

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Chinese-made VP11 MRAP 4x4 vehicle at AirShow China, November 2014 (Picture source Army Recognition)