China Lays New Brick in Silk Road With First Afghan Rail Freight

  • New rail route cuts travel time and expands China’s influence
  • Offers a link in Xi Jinping’s ‘one belt, one road’ endeavor

Chinese President Xi Jinping, right, with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, on Oct. 28, 2014.

Photographer: Lintao Zhang/Getty Images

For centuries, Chinese products have wended their way thousands of kilometers across mountains and deserts to the heart of central Asia, Afghanistan. Now, for the first time, the trade is carried by rail.

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