Omar SAMAD took up his posting as Afghan Ambassador to Canada in September 2004. He served as the Afghan Ambassador to Canada from 2004 to 2009. Prior to his arrival to Canada, he was the Spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Afghanistan and Director General of the Information Division for three years.
Born in Kabul in 1961, he attended primary and secondary schooling in Paris, London, and at the Lycee Esteqlal in Kabul. He left Afghanistan in 1979 following the Communist coup d’etat and settled in the United States.
During his residency in the U.S. he helped promote the cause of freedom and democracy in Afghanistan. In the 1980’s, he was the President of the Afghan Students Association and later the Afghan Youth Council in America.
Mr. Samad earned a Master’s Degree in International Relations as part of the Global Master of Arts Program at the Fletcher School, Tufts University, Massachusetts in 2006. He earned a B.A. degree in Communications and International Relations at the American University in Washington, D.C. in 1991. He studied Computer Science from 1980-82 at NOVA, Virginia.
Mr. Samad worked in the field of Information Technology from 1981 to 2001, while pursuing a second career in media, initially with ABC News and later as a freelance television producer. In 1996, he launched Azadi Afghan Radio and ran the Afghanistan Information Center based in Virginia. As an international media commentator and analyst on Afghanistan, he covered the Bonn Conference on Afghanistan for CNN prior to his return to his homeland in late 2001.
Ambassador Samad represented Afghanistan at the 11th United Nations Conference on Climate Change in Montreal in 2005. He has been an official member of Afghan delegations to numerous international conferences, including the Afghanistan Reconstruction conferences in Tokyo (2002) and Berlin (2004), UN General Assembly sessions (2002, 2003), Non-aligned Movement and Organization of Islamic Countries summit meetings, and other specialized conferences on Afghanistan between 2002 and 2004. He represented the Afghan Foreign Ministry on the Tripartite Commission on security between the United States, Pakistan and Afghanistan.
Mr. Samad and is fluent in French and English in addition to Afghanistan’s official languages. He is married to Khorshied Samad.