Taliban regime unity shows cracks after quarrel in the palace

Shortly after a government was formed, fierce feuds erupted within the new Taliban regime in Afghanistan. Supporters of two rival leaders clashed outside the presidential palace in Kabul, Taliban sources told the BBC.

The British broadcaster writes that there seems to be disagreement over who made the biggest contribution to the victory of the fundamentalists, who conquered the entire country after a lightning offensive last month. The division of ministerial posts would also cause dissatisfaction.

An insider says Taliban co-founder Abdul Ghani Baradar got into an argument with minister Khalil ur-Rahman Haqqani, a top figure from the extremist Haqqani network. Baradar would argue that the Taliban’s victory should be seen above all as a diplomatic achievement, while his rival would believe that the conflict has been won on the battlefield.

The deputy prime minister-appointed Baradar was the first Taliban leader to have direct contact with a United States president. He had a telephone conversation with Donald Trump in 2020. He also signed the agreement with the US that paved the way for US troops to leave Afghanistan.

The riot came to light after Baradar went out of publicity last week. That led to speculation that he had died. Sources tell the BBC that the deputy prime minister left for Kandahar after the conflict.

The Taliban told the media there was no arguing at all, but they made conflicting statements about what Baradar is currently doing. A spokesman told the BBC that the deputy prime minister is “tired and wants to rest”.

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