More On: China
China could have up to six more 'illegal police stations' in the US and hundreds all around the world
Isn't it true that Iran and China are friends? Isn't that true? Beijing and Tehran are connected via an axis. They work together on a strategic level. In truth, China and Iran have signed a $400 billion secret military and intelligence agreement lasting 25 years.
China is practically turning Iran into a client state. However, a new incident has thrown doubt on the two countries' friendship. As we all know, the Shi'ite nation has an opulent portfolio when it comes to sustaining an arsenal of violent militias and terror organizations aimed at bolstering Iran's power throughout the Middle East and Africa.
Al Shabaab is one such organization. In Somalia, this Iranian proxy group has been waging a war. The group claims to be waging jihad against "enemies of Islam," and it is fighting the Somali Federal Government and the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).
Al Shabab Declares China an Enemy
This is when things start to get interesting. China has been accused by Al Shabaab, an Iranian proxy, of attempting to create more military sites and increase its security footprint in Africa. The terror group also claimed that Beijing is using the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) to expand its political and economic dominance on the continent and get access to natural resources.
As a result, Al Shabaab has designated China as its primary objective. The terror group has labeled China an enemy for its "genocide" against the Uyghur Muslims of 'East Turkistan,' which should send shivers down China's spine.
East Turkistan is the term given to China's Xinjiang region by people attempting to separate it from the Communist government in order to create a new, independent country where Uyghurs and ethnic Turkic minority' rights and life can be respected.
In essence, an Iranian proxy organization has refused to refer to China's Western province as 'Xinjiang,' instead referring to the Uyghur homeland as 'East Turkestan.'
After Beijing contributed military supplies to Somalia to support the government's military and security campaign against Al Shabaab, the country made the proclamation against China. In successive tranches, China is expected to transfer more weaponry to Somalia's government.
Al Shabaab has ties to Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) (IRGC). Iranian money, guns, and ammunition may have been used in Al Shabaab attacks on US military outposts in Somalia and northern Kenya in 2019 and 2020, according to the Somali defense ministry and security officials. Iran has been working behind the scenes in Somalia to destabilize the US by supplying Al Shabaab with sophisticated weapons, improvised explosive devices, mortars, and poisons.
What Will China's Next Steps Be?
China is now confronted with a significant and unexpected challenge. Xi Jinping could never have imagined that an IRGC-controlled Iranian militia would turn against him. That has, however, already become a reality. China has been rattled in ways it has never been before. The Al Shabaab's proclamation of China as an enemy has strained relations between Beijing and Tehran. China will not accept Iran's indirect backing for Uyghur Muslims in East Turkestan (Xinjiang) lying down.
Iran could be hit hard in the near future. China has a variety of options for dealing with Iran. Al Shabaab, on the other hand, has established a precedent. Other extreme Islamic organizations, such as ISIS and ETIM, as well as governments, are likely to band together to oppose China's persecution of Uyghur Muslims and illegal occupation of East Turkestan.