Afghanistan, Myanmar will not address UNGA

Tue 28 Sep 2021, 12:23:28
United Nations: Afghanistan and Myanmar “withdrew" their participation from the General Debate of the high-level 76th session of the UN General Assembly, a spokesperson for the President of the 193-member world body said.

According to the latest list of speakers for the last day of the General Debate on Monday, Afghanistan and Myanmar are not listed to address the session, even as previous provisional speakers' lists had the countries' diplomats listed to speak at the General Debate.

When asked why Afghanistan and Myanmar are not listed as speakers for the final day of the General Debate, Monica Grayley, Spokesperson to the President of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly Abdulla Shahid, confirmed to PTI that: “we have received information that the Member State withdrew its participation in the General Debate which was scheduled for yesterday”.

Grayley said Myanmar withdrew its participation “some time back and Afghanistan over the weekend, when we heard of it.”

On Friday, spokesperson for the Secretary-General, Stephane Dujarric had said that “as for now, the Afghanistan representative inscribed on the list for Monday is H.E. Mr. Ghulam M. Isaczai,” the Permanent Representative.

Last week, the Taliban had written to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres nominating their spokesman Suhail Shaheen as Afghanistan's ambassador to the UN and had asked to participate in the high-level 76th session of the UN General Assembly.

Following the coup in Myanmar, its military rulers have said the country's Ambassador at UN Kyaw Moe Tun has been dismissed and they want Aung Thurein to replace him.

Given that the current dispensation in both Myanmar and Afghanistan nominated their own envoys to the UN, while the Permanent Representatives of the toppled Governments continued to be stationed here, the decision of who represents the two countries at the United Nations fell to the UN Credentials Committee.

On September 20, on the eve of the commencement of the high-level UN General Debate, the Secretary-General had received a communication with the letterhead “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs” dated September 20, 2021, signed by “Ameer Khan Muttaqi” as “Minister of Foreign Affairs”, requesting to participate in the “76th session of the UN General Assembly on September 21-27 2021”.

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