Salehi added that his works, particularly his fictional stories, were internationally known and left a valuable inheritance for all Persian language enthusiasts.

Iran’s Deputy Culture Minister for Cultural Affairs Mohsen Javadi also expressed his condolences, saying that he always presented the Persian civilization to readers through novel words.

The 76-year-old Afghan writer died from COVID-19 at a hospital in Kabul on December 11, his colleague Lotfullah Najafizada said on Twitter.

Zaryab is regarded as the most influential contemporary writer in Afghanistan and had been working as editor in chief of Tolo TV, the country’s largest broadcaster.

“Professor Rahnaward Zaryab spent many years of his life as a writer, novelist, and media and cultural activist, and left a legacy behind. His death is a big loss in the field of literature and culture in the country,” President Ashraf Ghani said in a statement posted on Facebook.

Born in the Rika Khana neighborhood of Kabul in 1944, Zaryab graduated from Kabul University with a degree in journalism. He undertook postgraduate studies in New Zealand and Wales.

Zaryab immigrated to France in the 1990s but returned to Kabul after the fall of the Taliban in 2001.

He has written more than 100 short stories, several novels, and the script of the Afghan film, ‘Akhtar-e Maskhara’ (The Ridiculous Akhtar).

His books and writings made him famous beyond Afghanistan’s borders, in Iran, Tajikistan, and India.

Zaryab's novel ‘Char Gerd Qala Gashtum’ (Walked Around the Castle Four Times) won the best author award in Iran in 2016.

Source: Iran Daily