Panel discussion on Afghanistan’s future at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office

On Tuesday 7 April, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) Afghanistan team invited Afghan Chevening scholars to spend the afternoon at the FCO in Westminster.

The scholars went on an exclusive tour of the historic building and attended a round table discussion with key members of the Afghanistan Unit and FCO research analysts. The group was also joined by Victoria Schofield, a lecturer in South Asia studies at King’s College London.

The discussion looked at the future of Afghanistan under Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai (since being elected last year) and ways to enhance regional cooperation with countries such as Pakistan and India to ensure better stability in Kabul. The panel discussion was very productive, providing Chevening Scholars with the invaluable opportunity to debate and engage with the FCO.

Some of the Afghan scholars commented:

‘The panel discussion on Afghanistan current political issues and its future was also very productive […] providing us the chance to share our thoughts with the team of FCO working on Afghanistan.’

‘I would like to thank the Afghanistan Team at the FCO for organising this wonderful event. It was also nice to see you there, and I am looking forward to see you here in York.’

‘The event did not only provide a great opportunity for the Afghan Chevening Scholars to meet and get to know each other, but it also gave us the opportunity to meet the Afghanistan team and Chevening team at the FCO to know them and talk through our experiences and stay here at UK. I thank FCO for great hospitality, and tour of FCO Office with the talk about its physical structure which carries so much history with it. Moreover, it was informing to be part of the panel discussion to share my understanding of the on-going political situation in Afghanistan, under President Ghani. The panel discussion was informative because it carried the combination of talks and understanding from UK, Academic and Afghans perspectives.’