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The Middle East Studies Forum is pleased to present the second event in the Policy Dialogue series:  Proxy dynamics and peace in Afghanistan.

This initiative is part of a Deakin University project ‘Assessing the impact of external actors in the Syrian and Afghan proxy wars’, funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York (grant number: G-18-55949).

What impacts do the activities of proxy forces have on conflict and peace in Afghanistan? Engaging with speakers from diverse backgrounds, including both civil and military, this seminar will examine proxy dynamics between relevant regional and extra-regional actors. Through this dialogue, we wish to generate new understandings of proxy conflict and propose important policy recommendations for peace and stability in Afghanistan.

You can access the event flyer here.

Discussion points

  • How can the international community respond to proxy dynamics in general and the situation in Afghanistan in particular?
  • What can be done at a regional level? Is there a role for regional bodies like the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization?
  • What role can the United Nations and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation play to deal with challenges posed by intra-Afghan conflicts and proxy dynamics?
  • What do you think India and the Afghan government could do?
  • What role can third parties such as China, Qatar or the US play?


Mr. Rahmatullah Nabil is a prominent Afghan politician. He served as head of the National Directorate of Security (NDS) during 2010-12. After that he held the position of an acting director in 2013 and later was re-appointed at the director of NDS in 2015.

Mr. Shoaib Rahim is the advisor to the Minister of Peace in Afghanistan. Previously he was the acting mayor of Kabul. He has also worked in Afghanistan’s Ministry of Defence.

Mr. Shakti Sinha is the honorary director of Atal Bihari Vajpayee Institute of Policy Research and International Studies, MS University, India. He is a distinguished fellow at India Foundation. He also served as a Joint Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office.

Ambassador Rakesh Sood is a Distinguished Fellow at Observer Research Foundation in India. He has over 38 years of experience in the field of foreign affairs, economic diplomacy and international security. He joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1976 and served in the Indian missions in Brussels, Dakar, Geneva and Islamabad. He was also in charge of multilateral disarmament negotiations, bilateral dialogues with Pakistan, strategic dialogues with other countries, including the US, UK, France and Israel. He served as Ambassador to Afghanistan, Nepal and France and was appointed Prime Minister’s Special Envoy for Disarmament and Non-Proliferation.


30 September
Melbourne 3-4:30pm GMT+10
Kabul 9:30-11am GMT+4.5
New Delhi 10:30-12:00pm GMT+5.5
Please join us via Zoom*

Please RSVP to by 28 September 2020

*Attendees will be provided with a Zoom link and password to access the webinar via a calendar invite sent to the email address registered with on the 29 September 2020

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