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Afzal Mahmood named envoy to UAE

Top Story

December 7, 2020

ISLAMABAD: The government has decided to appoint Afzal Mahmood as the country’s new Ambassador for the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

He will be assuming the assignment in Abu Dhabi upon receipt of his agreement (consent of appointment from the host country). Islamabad has sought the same from the UAE capital. The post turned vacant three months ago when Ambassador Ghulam Dastgir attained superannuation and returned home from the UAE.

Meanwhile, Muhammad Ayub has been designated Ambassador for Bahrain. He is currently posted in Pakistan’s High Commission in London. He has been elevated to the slot of the ambassador. Ambassador-designate for the UAE Afzal Mahmood is currently the country’s Ambassador in Bahrain where he was appointed envoy in August 2018. Ambassador Afzal Mahmood is an astute diplomat who severed at important slots in his career with the Foreign Service. He worked as Director General for Americas and Europe after returning from a three-year assignment in Houston, USA in September 2016. He served in the United States as Consul General for 10 Southern States. His earlier diplomatic assignments were: Deputy/Acting High Commissioner of Pakistan in Bangladesh (2009-2013), Political Counsellor in Kenya (2004-2007), Second Secretary (Political) in Canada (2001-2004), Third Secretary in Indonesia (1994-1998). Afzal Mahmood represented Pakistan at the United Nations Environment Programme and United Nations Human Settlements Programme in Nairobi as Deputy Permanent Representative during 2004-2007. His other multilateral assignments included occasional representation at Asean, Saarc and Climate Change meetings in Indonesia, East Africa, Bangladesh and Germany. He also worked at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as Assistant Director, Deputy Director and Director, responsible for Iran-Turkey, Europe and South Asia. He was trained in Turkish language at Ankara University, Turkey. The Ambassador speaks Turkish and Indonesian languages and attained fluency in Arabic.

The sources pointed out that several senior slots in country’s missions abroad are vacant and the Foreign Office has made up its mind to fill all such necessary posts without much further delay. Pakistan’s Acting High Commissioner for India Syed Haider Shah has been posted as Ambassador for Nepal vice Dr Mazhar Javed has taken over as High Commissioner in Pretoria for being envoy for South Africa. Dr Muhammad Sohail, who was High Commissioner for South Africa, has retired after reaching superannuation.

Aftab Hasan Khan will be Pakistan’s Acting High Commissioner for India from later this month after Syed Haider Shah’s returning home followed by his departure for Kathmandu. Pakistan and India don’t have high commissioner in their respective capitals since early last year when they recalled them after aggravation of bilateral ties due to India’s indescribable brutalities on the people of Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOJ&K).