The formation of the new government saw a bitter confrontation between Deputy Prime Minister Baradar and Refugee Minister Haqqani: followers would punch each other, Baradar would be injured, and the Taliban leader, Akhunzada – who has never been seen in public after the capture of Kabul – would be “abroad for business trips”
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KANDAHAR – In the end, even for the Taliban the knots come to a head. It had been at least a week that rumors had been bouncing between Kabul and Kandahar, amplified by social media, that a violent quarrel would have broken out between the moderate ranks linked to vice-premier Abdul Ghani Baradar and instead the neighboring radical elements to the powerful Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani.
Here in Kandahar the head of the press office wanted to insist that “They are all inventions.” Adding: “Beware of journalists who are relentlessly criticizing the Taliban.”
But now the rumors are intensifying. It even appears that Baradar was injured (some suggest he may have even been killed) during a fight with opponents.
The center of the controversy would have been the formation of the new cabinet over two weeks ago and the division of powers that followed. A source told the BBC that there would be a tough fight between Baradar and the refugee minister, Khalil ur-Rahman Haqqani, as their respective followers punched each other.
It seems that now Baradar has decided to leave Kabul to reach Kandahar. Here, however, no one confirms and his presence remains elusive.
As indeed the figure of Haibatullah Akhunzada, the leader of the movement since 2016, is also elusive, but has never been seen in public, not even after the capture of Kabul on August 15th. Even in his case it is not even certain that he is still alive.
Among his followers it is said that he may be “abroad on business trips”. Also an audio attributed to Baradar seems indicate that he is in turn abroad. But the rumor appears confused and no one can confirm its authenticity.
September 15, 2021 (change September 15, 2021 | 16:37)
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