Hardliners get key posts in new Taliban government

Hardliners get key posts in new Taliban government
The Taliban issued this recent photo of their new interim PM Mullah Mohammad Hassan Akhund. Source: Supplied
2 Min Read

Daily US Times: The Taliban have announced an interim government, where hardliners get top positions and the group also declared Afghanistan an “Islamic Emirate”.

The new cabinet, without any female, is made up of senior Taliban figures some of whom are notorious for attacks on US troops over the last two decades.

The Taliban government will be led by Mullah Mohammad Hassan Akhund, one of the founders of Taliban, who is on a UN blacklist.

Sirajuddin Haqqani is named as the interior minister. He is the feared FBI-wanted leader of the Haqqani militant group.

More than three weeks ago, the Islamist militia group seized control of most of Afghanistan, ousting the previous elected leadership.

The announcement of the interim government is a key step in the formation of a permanent Taliban government. The new leadership will face significant challenges, not least gaining international recognition and stabilising the country’s economy.

The group have previously said they wanted to form an inclusive government, but all of the ministers announced on Tuesday are already established leaders of Taliban, and no women were included.

A statement attributed to Mawlawi Hibatullah Akhundzada, the Supreme Leader of the group, told the government to uphold Sharia.

Mr Akhundzada has never made a public appearance. This is the first message appearing to come from him since the Taliban took control of Afghanistan last month.

Hassan Akhund, the new interim prime minister, served as deputy foreign minister from 1996 to 2001 in the Taliban government, when the group was last in power.

You may read: ‘Radical Islam’ still a first-order security threat, says Blair