On June 17, 2022, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres appointed German Markus Potzel as his new Deputy Special Representative (Political) for Afghanistan in the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan.
Mr. Potzel brings to this position more than 27 years of professional experience in diplomacy and international cooperation, including eight years of professional experience in Afghanistan and on Afghanistan. More recently, he served as German Ambassador to Afghanistan.
Mr. Potzel has held several senior positions in the German Foreign Office, including as German Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan (2017-2021), Commissioner for Crisis Management (since 2016), Ambassador of Germany in Afghanistan (2014-2016) and Head of the Middle East Division of the German Federal Foreign Office (2010-2014). He was also personal assistant to the Minister of Foreign Affairs (2006-2009), in the parliamentary and ministerial division of the German Foreign Office (2004-2005), as head of the economic and commercial section of the German Embassy in Tehran. (2000-2004) and Head of the Cultural Section of the German Embassy in Singapore (1997-2000).
In 2010, he was a visiting scholar at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs to study Iran-Afghan relations.
Mr. Potzel holds an MA in Persian and English Languages and Literatures from Humboldt University of Berlin in Germany and Dushanbe University in Tajikistan. He is fluent in German, English, Persian and Dari.