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The Financial Express

Taliban plans ‘inclusive caretaker government’ in Afghanistan

| Updated: August 28, 2021 18:59:25


Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban's deputy leader and negotiator, and other delegation members attend the Afghan peace conference in Moscow, Russia, March 18, 2021 — Alexander Zemlianichenko/Pool via Reuters Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban's deputy leader and negotiator, and other delegation members attend the Afghan peace conference in Moscow, Russia, March 18, 2021 — Alexander Zemlianichenko/Pool via Reuters

The Taliban says it is planning an inclusive caretaker government in Afghanistan after the group toppled the Western-backed administration in a stunning sweep earlier this month, Al Jazeera reports.

The caretaker government will include leaders from all ethnicities and tribal backgrounds in the country, according to the report that quoted Taliban sources as telling Al Jazeera.

Nearly a dozen names are being considered to be part of the new government, sources were quoted to have said.

The duration of the caretaker government is unclear at the moment, the report notes.

Afghanistan’s ethnic diversity has been at the centre of politics and conflict in the country, with no single ethnic group enjoying a decisive majority in the country of 40 million people, according to the Doha-based television channel.

The Pashtuns are Afghanistan’s biggest ethnic group, making up more than 42 per cent of the population. The predominantly Sunni Muslim community speaks the Pashto language and has dominated Afghan politics since the 18th century, according to the report.

Taliban sources were also quoted to have told Al Jazeera the caretaker government will have an “amir-ul momineen” (commander of the faithful) to lead the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.

They were quoted as saying a supreme leadership council has been convened to decide the form of the future government and nominate ministers.

Key ministries up for nominations include the judiciary, internal security, defence, foreign affairs, finance, information and a special assignment for Kabul’s affairs, Al Jazeera reports.

Taliban co-founder Mullah Baradar is in the capital, Kabul, while Mullah Mohammad Yaqoob, son of Taliban founder Mullah Omar, has travelled from Kandahar for the initial consultations on government formation, the sources were quoted to have said.

The sources were quoted to have added that the group wants to bring new faces in to the government, including the sons of Tajik and Uzbek tribal leaders.

They were quoted as saying the United States has been insisting on bringing in some members of the older governments, including former President Hamid Karzai and former Head of Afghanistan’s High Council for National Reconciliation Abdullah Abdullah.

The details about the formation of the caretaker government in Afghanistan came as the war-torn country is reeling from deadly attacks outside Kabul airport on Thursday evening, Al Jazeera reports.

The twin attacks claimed by ISIL-K, an ISIL affiliate in Afghanistan, killed at least 110 people, including 28 Taliban members and 13 US troops, according to the report.

Another Taliban source was quoted to have told Al Jazeera that the group remains committed to the 2020 Doha accord it signed with the US, including not allowing Afghan soil to be used to launch terror attacks.

The source was quoted to have said it was “unfair that the focus is on a few thousand people at the airport” and that “millions of Afghans enjoying security in Kabul are being ignored”.

On women’s rights, the source was cited as saying women will be allowed to work in various government bodies as they did in the previous government, mainly in the health and education sectors.

The source was quoted to have said special courts will be set up at local levels to fight corruption and make examples of corrupt officials.

The Taliban source was quoted as saying efforts are under way to remove barricades and “unnecessary” roadblocks in the cities, and that its forces at checkpoints have been asked to be “polite and courteous”.

The source was quoted to have said the Taliban caretaker government is planning a single tariff to be applicable for bringing goods into the country, from the point of entry to destination.

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