Taliban announce new caretaker government

After storming to power in recent weeks, militant Islamists have picked leaders for their new administration. The majority of the positions in the Taliban power structure have gone to long-serving Taliban leaders.

As the Taliban takes full control of Afghanistan, spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid stated on Tuesday who will be appointed to key government positions.

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Despite vows that they would govern in a less harsh manner than the group’s repressive government in the 1990s, the roster was primarily made up of old-guard members.

Hassan Akhund will be acting prime minister, Sarrajuddin Haqqani will be acting interior minister, Mullah Yaqoob will be acting defence minister, and Amir Khan Muttaqi will be acting foreign minister, according to a militant spokesman.

For decades, Akhund has presided over the Taliban’s leadership council. Mohammed Omar, the Taliban’s founder, has a son named Yaqoob. Haqqani is the heir of a powerful family and the leader of the cruel and powerful Haqqani network, which has evolved into its own Taliban sub-organization. Muttaqi is an established member of the Islamist organization’s diplomatic machinery, representing it during UN-mediated peace talks.

The Taliban have not stated how long the caretaker administration would last or whether elections will be held.

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