August 8, 2022

The reclusive supreme chief of the Afghan Taliban, Haibatullah Akhundzada, joined spiritual leaders from across the nation in Kabul on Friday at a gathering with a give attention to nationwide unity, congratulating them on the Islamists’ takeover of Afghanistan.

Taliban spokesmen confirmed that the chief, who is predicated within the southern metropolis of Kandahar, was within the capital attending the assembly of greater than 3,000 male members.

After receiving pledges of allegiance from members elevating their arms, Akhundzada congratulated these gathered on the group’s victory in Afghanistan when the Taliban swept to energy in August following their insurgency in opposition to overseas and U.S.-backed Afghan forces for 20 years.

“The success of the Afghan jihad will not be solely a supply of satisfaction for Afghans but additionally for Muslims all around the world,” he mentioned in line with state-run Bakhtar Information Company, utilizing the Arabic phrase signifying a non secular battle.

Because the Islamist motion unveiled its interim authorities in September, following the withdrawal of U.S.-led overseas forces and the collapse of a U.S.-backed authorities, the mysterious Akhundzada retained the function he has held since 2016 of supreme chief, the group’s final authority, however he’s not often seen publicly.

The Kabul gathering started on Thursday below tight safety.

At one level, sustained gunfire erupted close to the venue, which Taliban spokesmen mentioned was the results of safety males firing at a “suspicious location”, including that the scenario was below management.

A minimum of one participant had referred to as for ladies’ excessive colleges to be opened however it was not clear how widespread assist was for that proposal.

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Deputy Taliban chief and performing inside minister Sirajuddin Haqqani addressed the assembly on Friday, saying the world was demanding inclusive authorities and schooling, and the problems wanted time.

“This gathering is about belief, interplay, we’re right here to make our future in line with Islam and to nationwide pursuits,” he mentioned.

The Taliban went again on an announcement that every one colleges would open in March, leaving many women who had turned up at their excessive colleges in tears and drawing criticism from Western governments whose strict sanctions are severely undermining the Afghan economic system.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid mentioned that they’d respect the selections of these on the assembly however the ultimate say on women’ schooling was as much as the supreme chief.

A hardline cleric whose son was a suicide bomber, Akhundzada has spent most of his management within the shadows, letting others take the lead in negotiations that finally noticed the USA and their allies go away Afghanistan final August after 20 years of grinding counter-insurgency conflict.