MGIMO Welcomes Hamid Karzai

MGIMO Welcomes Hamid Karzai

25 April 2019

April 25th, the former President of Afghanistan (2004–2014) Hamid Karzai came to MGIMO to meet with the leadership of the University and deliver a lecture to students.

The guest was greeted by MGIMO’s Vice-Rector for Graduate and International Programs Andrey Baykov, the Director of the Institute of International Studies Andrey Sushentsov, the Russian Ambassador to Afghanistan (2002–2004) Mikhail Konarovsky, the Dean of the School of International Relations Yuri Bulatov and members of the faculty. The Afghan delegation comprised the Ambassador of Afghanistan to Russia Latif Bahand and other representatives of the embassy and of the Afghan diaspora.

MGIMO’s interest in Afghanistan dates back quite far: indeed the University has been teaching Pashto since 1954, and Dari since 1985. In 1995, the department responsible for Persian, Pashto and Dari merged with the one of Indian languages, thus creating the department of Indo-Iranian languages. Annually MGIMO offers three scholarships to citizens of Afghanistan covering full tuition at Undergraduate and Graduate levels in line with Russia’s Presidential Executive Order. Since 1984, 115 citizens of Afghanistan have graduated from the University.

In his lecture, Hamid Karzai spoke about his country’s history, its relations with the Soviet Union, and the role of different great powers in Asia. The former President also described how Russia is perceived in Afghanistan, sharing his impressions on current bilateral relations. After the talk, students put questions to the guest about Afghanistan’s relations with Russia and the United States, the country’s upcoming elections, and the current opportunities and threats facing the country.

— See the MGIMO web-site for russian version