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|M. Ashraf Haidari|
|Deputy Chief of Mission - Minister Counselor|
2012 - Present
|Alma mater||Georgetown University
Bakhtar High School
M. Ashraf Haidari is the Deputy Chief of Mission (Minister Counselor) of the Embassy of Afghanistan in New Delhi, India. From June 2011 to July 2012, he served as Deputy Assistant National Security Adviser and Senior Policy & Oversight Adviser at the Office of the President of Afghanistan. From 2004 to 2011, Haidari served the Embassy of Afghanistan in Washington, D.C., the United States, in various capacities including: Chargé d’Affaires; Deputy Chief of Mission and Political Counselor; Acting Military Attaché; First Secretary for Political, Security & Development Affairs; and Director of Government and Media Relations. From 2001 to 2004, he worked as Assistant Vice President for Federal Relations and Assistant Development Director at Georgetown University. From 1992 to 1997, Haidari held various positions with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the United Nations World Food Program (UNWFP) in Afghanistan.
Haidari was born and grew up in Afghanistan, and shares a personal story that resonates with other ordinary Afghans touched by decades of conflict. He experienced these hardships firsthand both under the Soviet occupation in 1980s and the Taliban rule in 1990s. Haidari hails from Kabul where his family and he lived throughout 1980s, when most Afghans fled the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. In late 1980s, the Soviet forces withdrew from Afghanistan, the Communist regime rapidly weakened, and the Mujahideen fighters frequently shelled the Kabul City with hundreds of blind rockets a day. Haidari and his family were almost killed by one of the several blind rockets, which landed in their neighborhood and wiped out two families. Even as rocket shells rained on Kabul, Haidari continued studying and working as a sidewalk vendor to support himself and his family. In 1991, fighting intensified and scores of civilians were killed and injured every day, while thousands of Afghans fled Afghanistan to neighboring Pakistan and Iran. But Haidari and his family were internally displaced, taking refuge in the northern City of Mazar-e-Sharif. Haidari learned English by himself, having memorized an old Oxford dictionary because English textbooks were in short supply. On learning some English, Haidari got his first job with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which gradually paved the way for his long journey to the United States for higher education in 1997, when the Taliban had captured much of AFghanistan.
Haidari has lectured on Afghanistan and regional security issues at public and academic forums. His writings have appeared in The Hindu, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Washington Times, San Francisco Chronicle, The Boston Globe, The Baltimore Sun, Asia Times, Korea Times, The National, Diplomatic Courier, Diplomatic Traffic, The Washington Diplomat, EurasiaNet, Central Asia Newswire, and others. In addition, Haidari has discussed Afghanistan and regional affairs on international TV and radio shows, including CNN, Al Jazeera, BBC, VOA, C-SPAN, NPR, Alhurra, and others.
Haidari is educated in the United States, Switzerland, and Afghanistan. He holds a Master of Arts in Security Studies (Concentration: International Security & Development) from the Georgetown University Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service; and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Relations from Wabash College. During 2002-2003, Haidari was a Fellow in Foreign Service at the Georgetown University Institute for the Study of Diplomacy, and holds advanced certificates in International Affairs and Refugee & Humanitarian Emergencies from the University.
Haidari is the recipient of public and academic awards, including: The Fredrick J. Urbaska Civic Service Award, National Association of Wabash Men (NAWM), Indiana, 2011; The Pedro Arrupe, S.J., International Peace Scholarship Award, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C., 2003; The Fellowship in Foreign Service Award; Georgetown University, Washington DC, 2002; The International Merit Scholarship Award, Wabash College, Indiana, 1997; and The F. Michael Cassel Award; Wabash College Political Science Department, Indiana, 1999. He has been featured in the following publications: The Journal Review (December 2008), Indiana Daily Student (August 2007), The Washington Diplomat (January 2007), The Wabash Magazine (Fall 2005), The Georgetown University Office of Alumni & University Relations Newsletter (August 2002), The Wabash Magazine (Summer 2001), and The Bachelor (October 1998).
- Debating the Failed States Index - An FP Roundtable | Foreign Policy
- Afghan aid does more harm than good in wrong hands - The National
- Afghani Position on Troop Deployment - C-SPAN Video Library
- Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan in New Delhi
- M. Ashraf Haidari | USC Center on Public Diplomacy | Center Bios
- Wabash Magazine: Feature
- Rebuilding the Afghan dream - The Hindu
- Asia Times Online :: South Asia news, business and economy from India and Pakistan
- The Diplomatic Pouch
- Wabash College: News Crawfordsville, Indiana
- Young Diplomats in D.C.Tackle Big-Time Roles