The Kabul diplomat has been serving as the ambassador in Doha since February 2019 and played a significant role in helping facilitate the Inter-Afghan talks.
Afghan Ambassador to Qatar Abdul Hakim Dalili passed away in Doha on Tuesday due to a cardiac arrest, authorities confirmed.
“The death of my close colleague Abdul Hakim Dalili, the Afghan ambassador to Qatar, is extremely painful and sad,” tweeted Afghan’s Foreign Minister Mohammed Haneef Atmar.
“He was a trained diplomat and a patriotic figure, serving the country with commitment and reputation, and played a valuable role in facilitating peace talks in Qatar. My condolences to the family, colleagues and people of Afghanistan on this great loss,” Atmar added.
Qatar’s Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani sent a letter to Afghan President Ashraf Ghani to express his sincere condolences.
Officials from the High Council for National Reconciliation [HCNR] also commented on the unfortunate new, saying “his death is a big loss to Afghanistan especially as he had been actively involved in the peace talks process”.
Dalili assumed his position as the Afghan ambassador to Qatar in February 2019, returning to the country where he completed his academic studies.
Dalili was seven-years-old during the-then Soviet Union invasion of Afghanistan, which forced him and his family to migrate to Pakistan at the age of ten. He lived his life in Peshawar, where he completed his primary and college education before going to Qatar.
The academically inclined student was among those who received the scholarships that the Qatari government gave Afghan refugees in the late 1980’s. Dalili was one of the five successful students in his school in Afghanistan and his academic distinction helped him earn a scholarship to Qatar University in 1992, where he studied civil engineering and graduated with honors in 1997.
He then served as a teaching assistant in the same department of Qatar University that he graduated from, where he taught for seven years before heading back to his home country. Upon his return, he became more engaged in the country’s politics and received several offers to represent his country, which included serving as the Afghan ambassador to Kuwait.
However, he chose Qatar years later, returning to the beginning of his academic achievements.
His role in the ongoing Inter-Afghan peace talks in Qatar was also praised by President Ghani, describing his passing as a “great loss” of a “sincere servant to his country”.
Until now, there has been no news to confirm who will replace him.
The next round of negotiations between the Afghan government and the Taliban are expected to resume in Doha on January 5, 2020.