BEIJING: China’s defense ministry is defending military cooperation with Tajikistan following a report of a sizeable Chinese troop presence at a base in the Central Asian state.
Ministry spokesman Ren Guoqiang told reporters at a monthly briefing Thursday that cooperation between the two was “in line with” international law and related resolutions passed by the United Nations Security Council.
However, Ren says there is no Chinese presence in the adjacent Wakhan Corridor belonging to Afghanistan.
China had apparently sought to keep its Tajikistan base manned by members of the paramilitary People’s Armed Police a secret. However, the Washington Post in February reported on the sizeable Chinese military complex first-hand, although it remains unclear what the troops’ mission is and Ren provided no details.
The area borders China’s restive Xinjiang region.