Pakistan’s envoy has returned to Kabul: Sources

Sources from Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry said on Monday that the Pakistani envoy for Afghanistan, Ubaid-ur-Rehman Nizamani, returned to Kabul last week.

Nizamani is staying at Kabul Serena Hotel and has not returned to his office in Kabul so far, sources added.

The Pakistani envoy had left Kabul last December after an attack on Pakistan’s diplomatic office in Kabul.

Meanwhile, reports say that Pakistan has decided to send its ambassador back to Kabul four months after he was pulled out of the country following a failed assassination attempt.

Pakistan’s media has reported that the decision was made during a phone call on Saturday night between Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and the Taliban’s foreign minister Amir Khan Muttaqi. VOA also reported that the envoy will return this week.

“The ambassador is due to arrive in Kabul before the Eid-ul-Fitr festival,” a Pakistani government official told VOA.

The official refused to share more details, saying diplomatic movements require secrecy for security reasons. Eid, which marks the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, is expected to begin in Afghanistan on this weekend.

Both the Pakistan foreign ministry and the Taliban have issued statements confirming the conversation Saturday between the two but no mention was made in either statement on the planned return of Pakistani Chargé d’affaires Ubaid-ur-Rehman Nizamani to Kabul.

Nizamani was on a routine walk inside the Pakistan embassy compound in Kabul on December 2 when Daesh shooters opened fire on him from a nearby building. He escaped unhurt, but his Pakistani security guard was hit in the legs by bullets. Pakistan immediately evacuated the envoy and demanded the Taliban enhance the security of its embassy.

Daesh claimed responsibility for the attack.

Several countries, including Pakistan, China, Russia, Turkey, and Iran, have kept their embassies in Kabul open but the United States and other Western nations moved their diplomatic missions out of Afghanistan to Qatar.