No democracy, only Sharia law in Afghanistan, say the Taliban

New council may govern Afghanistan, with Taliban supreme leader Haibatullah Akhundzada taking overall charge.

August 18, 2021 10:33 pm | Updated August 27, 2021 06:36 pm IST - Kabul

Afghanistan may be governed by a council now that the Taliban have taken over, while Islamist group’s supreme leader Haibatullah Akhundzada would likely remain in overall charge, a senior member of the group said.

Many issues regarding how the Taliban would run Afghanistan have yet to be finalised, Waheedullah Hashimi, who has access to the group’s decision-making, said in an interview. But Afghanistan would not be a democracy, he added. “We will not discuss what type of political system should we apply in Afghanistan because it is clear. It is Sharia law and that is it.”

Taliban leader Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada. File

Taliban leader Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada. File

 

He said, “There will be no democratic system at all because it does not have any base in our country.”

Also read | Taliban fires at protestors in Jalalabad

Mr. Hashimi said he would be joining a meeting of the Taliban leadership that would discuss issues of governance later this week.

Power structure

The power structure that Mr. Hashimi outlined would bear similarities to how Afghanistan was run the last time the Taliban were in power from 1996 to 2001. Then, supreme leader Mullah Omar remained in the shadows and left the day-to-day running of the country to a council.

Mr. Akhundzada would likely play a role above the head of the council, who would be akin to the President, Mr. Hashimi said.

Timeline | U.S., Taliban and Afghanistan: 20 years of bloodshed

“Maybe his [Mr. Akhundzada’s] deputy will play the role of President,” Mr. Hashimi said, speaking in English.

The Taliban’s supreme leader has three deputies: Mawlavi Yaqoob, son of Mullah Omar, Sirajuddin Haqqani, leader of the powerful militant Haqqani network, and Abdul Ghani Baradar, who heads the political office in Doha and is one of the founding members of the group.

Explained | What’s next for Afghanistan?

New national force

The Taliban would also reach out to former pilots and soldiers from the Afghan armed forces to join its ranks, Mr. Hashimi said.

On recruiting soldiers and pilots who fought for the ousted Afghan government, Mr. Hashimi said the Taliban planned to set up a new national force that would include its own members and the government soldiers willing to join.

Also read | Joe Biden, Boris Johnson agree to hold G7 meeting on Afghan crisis

“Most of them have got training in Turkey and Germany and England. So we will talk to them to get back to their positions,” he said.  “Of course we will have some changes, to have some reforms in the army, but still we need them and will call them to join us.”

How successful that recruitment is remains to be seen. Thousands of soldiers have been killed by Taliban insurgents over the last 20 years.

Karzai meets Taliban commander

Former President Hamid Karzai met a Taliban commander and senior leader of the Haqqani network militant group, Anas Haqqani, for talks on transition, a Taliban official said on Wednesday.

Former Afghan president Hamid Karzai meets Haqqani leader Anas Haqqani in Kabul on August 18, 2021.

Former Afghan president Hamid Karzai meets Haqqani leader Anas Haqqani in Kabul on August 18, 2021.

 

Mr. Karzai was accompanied by the old government’s main peace envoy, Abdullah Abdullah, in the meeting, said the Taliban official. He gave no more details.

Top News Today

Comments

Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.