Afghanistan envoy pulls out from General Assembly debate: UN

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Afghanistan’s ambassador to the United Nations pulled out of delivering an address to world leaders at the overall Assembly afterward Monday, a UN spokesperson said.

Ghulam Isaczai, who represented president Ashraf Ghani’s regime that was ousted last month, had been thanks to defy the Taliban with a speech but his name was far away from the list of speakers early Monday.

“The country withdraws its participation within the general debate,” Monica Grayley, a spokeswoman for the assembly’s president, confirmed to AFP.

She added that Afghanistan’s mission to the UN had not cited a reason for the withdrawal.

The Taliban wrote a letter to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres last week requesting that its new secretary of state, Amir Khan Muttaqi, be allowed to “participate”. The letter insisted that Isaczai “no longer represents” Afghanistan at the worldwide body.

The letter said that the Taliban had nominated their Doha-based spokesman Suhail Shaheen as Afghanistan’s permanent representative to the UN.

The note came after Guterres had received a separate letter from Isaczai, dated September 15, containing the list of Afghanistan’s delegation for the session.

That letter listed Isaczai as Afghanistan’s permanent representative.

The UN still considers Isaczai the top of Afghanistan’s mission.

“Only the mission can withdraw,” from addressing the assembly, a UN official told AFP on condition of anonymity.

The Afghan mission wasn’t immediately available for comment.

A nine-member credentials committee that included the US, Russia, and China, has got to approve the Taliban’s request but it didn’t meet in time.

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