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India Urges Internal Resolution As Tensions Mount At Afghan Embassy In Delhi

India asserts the matter as an "internal issue" and urges a resolution from within, highlighting the complexities of diplomatic relations in the post-Taliban era.

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MEA Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi
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Amidst a power struggle at the Afghan embassy in Delhi, tensions have escalated following the Taliban's appointment of a diplomat to lead the mission, replacing the incumbent envoy. Reacting to the situation, India has deemed it an "internal matter" of the embassy, urging the parties involved to resolve the dispute internally.

The current ambassador, Farid Mamundzay, who was appointed by the previous Ashraf Ghani government, has continued his duties even after the Taliban assumed control in August 2021. However, in April, the Taliban named Qadir Shah as the new head of the mission. Shah, who had been serving as a trade counselor at the embassy since 2020, attempted to assume charge as the charge d'affaires when Mamundzay was abroad. However, other diplomats at the embassy thwarted his efforts, leading to a stalemate.

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On May 15, the Afghan embassy issued a statement asserting that there had been no change in its leadership and vehemently denied Shah's appointment by the Taliban. The embassy, led by Ambassador Mamundzay, categorically rejected claims made by an individual purportedly acting on behalf of the Taliban.

Sources familiar with the matter revealed that Shah had written a letter to India's Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), seeking recognition while Mamundzay was traveling abroad. This move further complicated the situation, adding to the ongoing internal dispute.

Last year in June, India had re-established its diplomatic presence in Kabul by deploying a "technical team" to its embassy. Concerns over security had prompted the withdrawal of Indian officials from the embassy after the Taliban's takeover. In the past two years, the Taliban had reportedly made approximately 14 attempts to remove the ambassador, conveying to New Delhi that the embassy's diplomats no longer represented the government in Kabul.

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(With PTI Inputs)

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