Iran appoints Qomi as new ambassador to Afghanistan

Tehran confirmed on Saturday night that Hassan Kazemi Qomi has been appointed as Iran’s ambassador to Kabul.

Qomi, who was the Iranian president’s special envoy for Afghanistan, will take over from Bahador Aminian.

Reports emerged earlier Saturday that Aminian was returning to Iran, as “his three-year term had ended”.
However, Aminian was embroiled in controversy earlier this month after a hacker group, Black Reward, exposed secret files belonging to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) media arm, Fars news agency.

The files reportedly contained remarks made by Aminian at a meeting. According to Black Reward, Aminian said “the Taliban group is a disaster and a shame for Afghanistan and all Muslims. They are a sad tragedy for Shiites and a wide-ranging nightmare for women.”

“We have no way but to stand by the Taliban and use them,” Aminian has said, referring to Iran’s engagement with the Taliban.

He also reportedly compared the Taliban to the Mongol army stating: “We have historical experience that the Mongols came to our country, but our culture and civilization were so rich that we used the Mongols. We made them Muslims and Shiites. Even now, there is the possibility to do so.”

When the files were exposed early this month, the Iranian embassy in Kabul called it “fake news.”

“Publishing such unrealistic and biased reports cannot create an obstacle in the deep relations between the two friendly and brotherly countries of Iran and Afghanistan,” the Iranian embassy tweeted on December 3.

On Saturday a senior diplomat Abbas Badrifar confirmed Qomi’s appointment and said the new envoy would take up his post as soon as he finishes up in Tehran. This came after the embassy tweeted Aminian’s mission “has ended in Afghanistan”.