Last week, the Clingendael Academy in The Hague, The Netherlands, was privileged to welcome 15 young diplomats from the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. For the third time, professionals from Afghanistan participate in a 5-week training program at the Clingendael Institute. During their time in The Hague, they will benefit from a program specifically aimed to their needs as junior diplomats from their country. Topics include the New Silk Road Initiative, regional economic and political cooperation, energy in the South Asian region, strategic policy planning, international law and much, much more. Additionally, their skills essential to the diplomatic practice, such as negotiations, intercultural communication, and debating, will be further trained and developed, and they will visit various international organizations in The Hague and Brussels.
Governance, the Rule of Law and Human Rights
After a welcoming and introductory day on Monday, the enthusiastic participants had a busy first week filled with lectures, skill training sessions and working visits. Governance, the rule of law and human rights were the topics of focus for this week. A lecture on international law, a meeting with Dutch civil servants working at the Human Rights and International Institutions at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a visit to the International Criminal Court, and an interactive training in public speaking were included. On top of all that, the participants were also invited to their Embassy in The Hague, were they were welcomed by their colleagues and enjoyed an Afghan dinner.
Clingendael and Afghanistan
The Clingendael Institute has a long-lasting relation with Afghanistan, and has trained over 70 diplomats from this country already. During the 2000s, Afghan diplomats participated in multilateral training programs for diplomats from Central Asia and Mongolia. Since 2011, training programs have been specifically tailored towards Afghanistan, in which Clingendael organized a course for Junior Diplomats, as well as a 2-week course for senior civil servants from Afghanistan. With four more weeks to come in the current training program, we wish our participants all the best and a very joyful and worthwhile time in The Netherlands