Muhammad Tahir is a nonresident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Center. Tahir is an accomplished journalist and media executive focusing on Central Asia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Turkey. After 20 years in the media sector, he recently entered the humanitarian sector as the Senior Manager for Media and Public Relations at Corus International.
From 2016 to 2022, Tahir was RFE/RL’s Central and South Asia liaison in Washington DC, responsible for elevating the organization’s regional portfolio. Among other initiatives at RFE/RL, he launched and produced the acclaimed weekly Majlis and AfPak File podcasts, respectively focusing on Central Asia and Afghanistan/Pakistan.
Prior to that, from 2012 to 2016, he was RFE/RL’s broadcast news director for the Turkmen Service out of the organization’s headquarters in the Czech Republic. There, he led the transformation of his unit from radio to a multimedia channel leading to an unprecedented 40,000% growth in online audience and established a network of correspondents throughout Central Asia.
From 2010 to 2011, Tahir was RFE/RL’s foreign affairs correspondent in Washington DC, covering Central and South Asia, and from 2003 to 2010, he was a broadcast journalist and Central Asia editor in the organization’s head office in Europe. In 2008 he was appointed as an Osher Fellow at the Hoover Institution, researching the correlation between Central Asia’s Soviet legacy and growing authoritarian tendencies in the region.
Tahir’s journalism career started in 1999 as a foreign affairs correspondent in Istanbul, with subsequent appointments as bureau chief in Islamabad and later in Kabul; he covered major events, including the rise and the fall of the first Taliban regime in Afghanistan and the invasion of the country by coalition forces.
He is fluent in all local languages in Central and South Asia, has decades of first-hand experience covering the region in the regional and global context and is a sought-after speaker in his areas of expertise.