AFGHANISTAN: Leadership council of Taliban, which is also known as Quetta Shura, was reportedly comprised of Pashtoons only but the group has now included members of Tajik, Uzbek and Turkmen tribes into it.
According to Pakistan’s The Express Tribune news agency, a news source of Taliban, the new leader of Taliban Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour has almost completed re-organisation of the Taliban movement after the death of Mullah Mohammad Omar and at least three non-Pashtoons have been inducted into the leadership council to quash the impression that the Taliban only represent ethnic Pashtoons.
The report which is published today states that Maulvi Abdul Rehman, an ethnic Uzbek, and Sheikh Sharif, an ethnic Tajik, have been inducted into the council. A Turkmen has also been given a berth in the new council, it adds.
It cites unnamed Taliban as saying that this is the first time non-Pahstoon have been given a place in the council.
The report further states that Mullah Omar’s son Mullah Yaqoob is also inducted into the new leadership council and Mullah Omar’s brother, Mullah Abdul Manan into the political commission. The two had previously opposed Mullah Akhtar but later pledged allegiance to him.
The media outlet citing a top Taliban official as saying that two members of the leadership council ‘Quetta Shura’ have been expelled from the council for refusing to accept Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour as their leader.
It states that Mullah Abdul Razzaq and Mullah Hasan Rehmani who were also involved in peace talks are no more members of Taliban leadership council.
They were among the Taliban leaders who had arrived in Islamabad for a second round of talks with Afghan government officials in July which was, however, cancelled over Mullah Omar’s death, the report states. -KP