China’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Wang Wenbin said this week that Beijing calls on the United States to immediately return Afghanistan’s central bank assets.
Addressing a press conference on Friday, Wang said in response to a US judge ruling against families of September 11 victims being given $3.5 billion from Afghanistan’s frozen funds that the US must “reflect on its action and immediately return the Afghan central bank assets.
“This is Afghans’ life-saving money we are talking about, which should be used independently by Afghanistan and for the improvement of people’s livelihood and peace and reconstruction as soon as possible.
“The longer Afghanistan is rejected access to the money, the longer the US will be questioned about its morality and conscience. People will keep asking why the US stands against the Afghan people?
“We call on the US to reflect on its action and immediately return the Afghan central bank assets and remove unilateral sanctions on Afghanistan.
On Wednesday, the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) called on Washington to return the money after the New York federal judge ruled the families of victims in the 9/11 attacks cannot seize the funds.
The United States took control of the assets soon after the IEA gained control of the country in Afghanistan in 2021, with President Joe Biden saying the money could be made available to the families of 9/11 victims.
But Judge George Daniels of the Southern District of New York said on Tuesday the federal courts lack the jurisdiction to seize the funds from Afghanistan´s central bank.