God’s gift AkhundzadehFrance Press agency
Posted on 08/30/2021 11:16 AM
Here is a list of the most prominent leaders of Jemaah Islamiyah, which regained power on August 15, 20 years after it was ousted by a US-led military coalition:
The prestige of God Akhundzadeh is the supreme guide
Prior to his appointment, little was known about Akhundzada, a secretive figure devoted to religious and legal matters. His role at the forefront of the movement was seen as more symbolic than practical.
The son of a cleric, born in Kandahar, the stronghold of the Bahtun state in southern Afghanistan and the birthplace of the Taliban, Akhundzadeh quickly secured a pledge of allegiance from al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri.
Akhundzada’s delicate mission was to unite the Taliban, torn apart by a violent power struggle after Mansoor’s death and the revelations they hid for years about the death of the movement’s founder, Mullah Omar.
He succeeded in maintaining the cohesion of the group and continued to be discreet and silent, limiting himself to broadcasting rare annual messages on Islamic holidays.
Al Mulla Baradar, Co-founder
Like many Afghans, his life was shaped by the 1979 Soviet invasion, which turned him into a mujahid, Islamic fundamentalist fighter, believed to have fought alongside Mullah Omar.
Both are said to have founded the Taliban during the Afghan civil war in the early 1990s, when warlords fought for control of the country in blood and fire.
In 2001, after the US intervention and the fall of the Taliban regime, he was part of a small group of insurgents willing to agree to a deal that recognized the government in Kabul. But the initiative was rejected by the Americans, who occupied the country for 20 years.
Abdul Ghani Baradar was the military commander of the Taliban when he was arrested in 2010 in Karachi, Pakistan. He was released in 2018, mainly due to pressure from Washington.
Reputed and respected by the various Taliban factions, he was appointed head of the group’s political office in Qatar.
From the Gulf state, he led negotiations with the Americans that led to the withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan.
And he returned to Afghanistan, to Kandahar, two days after the Islamist group took power. Then he traveled to Kabul.
Sirajuddin Haqqani, leader of the Haqqani Network
The network her father founded is classified as a terrorist by Washington, which has long considered it the most dangerous fighting faction against US and NATO forces over the past two decades in Afghanistan.
He is also accused of killing some senior Afghan government officials and holding or holding Westerners hostage for ransom. One of them was US Army Boy Bergdahl, who was released in 2014 in exchange for five Afghan detainees at Guantanamo.
Known for their independence, fighting skills and successful business, the Haqqani are believed to lead operations in the mountainous regions of eastern Afghanistan and will have a significant influence on the movement’s decisions.
Mullah Yaqoub, heir
His ancestry and ties to his father, idolized by the historical leader of the Taliban, made him a unifying figure within a broad and diverse movement.
Speculation about his exact role in the rebellion continues. Some analysts believe his appointment to chair this committee in 2020 was just a symbol.
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