Taliban supreme leader makes first public appearance

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Taliban supreme leader Mullah Haibatullah Akhundzada addressed supporters in the southern city of Kandahar, officials announced Sunday, his first public appearance since taking control of the group in 2016.

An excerpt from the leader’s speech was also tweeted out. However, the tweet clarified that the reason the whole speech could not be shared was because it had not been recorded properly.

Akhundzada has been the spiritual chief of the movement since 2016 but has remained a reclusive figure, even after his group seized power in Afghanistan in August.

On Saturday, he visited the Darul Uloom Hakimah madrassa to “speak to his brave soldiers and disciples”, according to Taliban officials.

In it, Akhundzada — referred to as “Amirul Momineen”, or commander of the faithful — gives a religious message.

The speech did not touch on political organisation, but sought God’s blessing for the Taliban leadership.

During his address, the Taliban supreme leader asked his followers to maintain account-ability among their ranks and avoid anything not allowed by Quran and Sharia.

He prayed for the success of the Islamic Emir-ate and the newly installed Taliban government.

The audio message further comprised guidelines for his followers and the Taliban and it is ex-pected that the video of the function will be re-leased soon.

 

 

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