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Protesters call off rallies in Kabul as the Taliban ban demonstrations

Protest organisers cancelled rallies in Kabul on Thursday after the Taliban banned demonstrations ‘for the time being’ and warned violators ‘will face extreme authorized motion’ after the group was humiliated by viral photographs of girls standing as much as them.

Video posted on-line this week confirmed courageous ladies demanding their rights in entrance of Taliban fighters and protesting the lack of feminine illustration in the all-male authorities shaped on Tuesday. 

The Islamists have taken a harsh stance to demonstrators – locking a crowd ladies in a basement to stop them becoming a member of protests and whipping those that made to the rallies this week. 

Harrowing photographs additionally emerged of journalists with offended welts and bruises after they have been detained by Taliban fighters whereas protecting protests.

And footage confirmed the militants threatening demonstrators with weapons and firing warning pictures into the air to forcibly disperse crowds.

The protests are proving an early take a look at for the Taliban who’ve seen a present of resistance since taking energy on August 15 that was unthinkable below the extremist group’s final regime in the Nineties. 

There was a noticeably stronger Taliban presence on the streets of Kabul on Thursday morning as armed fighters – together with particular forces in army fatigues – stood guard on road corners and manned checkpoints to implement the ban on demonstrations, in line with AFP journalists. 

Protest organisers cancelled rallies in Kabul on Thursday after the Taliban banned demonstrations ‘for the time being’ and warned violators ‘will face extreme authorized motion’ after the group was humiliated by viral photographs of girls standing as much as them 

Armed Taliban fighters have been seen this week threatening protesters with weapons as they attempt to quell a rising wave of demonstrations in opposition to their rule

A Taliban fighter pulls his gun on a feminine protester in Kabul at a protest in opposition to the all-male administration on Tuesday 

Afghan ladies who have been veiled, however not sporting burqas, have been seen marching via the streets of Kabul clutching ‘freedom’ indicators and chanting this week earlier than the Taliban banned protests

Harrowing photographs emerged of two journalists with offended welts and bruises after they have been detained by Taliban fighters whereas protecting protest

Neamat Naqdi (left) winces in ache as his colleagues assist him take away his shirt after he was severely crushed by Taliban fighters whereas protecting protests on Wednesday 

Earlier this week armed fighters dispersed a whole lot of protesters in cities throughout Afghanistan, together with the capital Kabul, Faizabad in the northeast and in Herat in the west, the place two individuals have been shot useless.  

There was a noticeably stronger Taliban presence on the streets of Kabul on Thursday morning as armed fighters – together with particular forces in army fatigues – stood guard on road corners and manned checkpoints, in line with AFP journalists.

An organiser of a protest exterior the Pakistan embassy – the place gunmen sprayed pictures into the air on Tuesday to disperse a rally – informed AFP on Thursday it had been cancelled due to the in a single day ban. 

At the website of one other deliberate protest in the metropolis, there have been no indicators of an illustration. 

It comes after a Taliban interim authorities, drawn solely from loyalist ranks, was introduced this week with established hardliners in all key posts and no ladies – regardless of earlier guarantees of an inclusive administration for all Afghans. 

Protests in latest days have focused the cupboard. In Kabul yesterday a bunch of girls bearing indicators studying: ‘A Cabinet with out ladies is a failure,’ held one other protest in the Pul-e Surkh space of the metropolis.  

‘The Cabinet was introduced and there have been no ladies in the Cabinet. And some journalists who got here to cover the protest have been all arrested and brought to the police station,’ stated a girl in a video shared on social media.   

Pictured: A protest in Kabul on Tuesday, which got here after the Afghan resistance chief known as for a ‘nationwide rebellion’ in opposition to the group

There have been reviews of protesters, together with ladies, being hit with the butts of rifles on Tuesday

Taliban forces stroll in entrance of Afghan demonstrators as they shout slogans throughout an anti-Pakistan protest on Tuesday

A Taliban fighter stands guard in Kabul at the moment after the Islamist group banned demonstrations ‘for the time being’ and warned of extreme punishments for violators

It comes a day after Taliban fighters left two journalists with ugly welts and bruises after detaining them whereas they have been protecting protests. 

The pair have been picked up at an illustration yesterday and brought to a police station in the capital, the place they are saying they have been punched and crushed with batons, electrical cables and whips after being accused of organising the protest.

‘One of the Taliban put his foot on my head, crushed my face in opposition to the concrete. They kicked me in the head… I assumed they have been going to kill me,’ photographer Nematullah Naqdi informed AFP. 

Naqdi and his colleague Taqi Daryabi, a reporter, who each work for Etilaat Roz (Information Daily) had been assigned to cover a small protest in entrance of a police station in Kabul by ladies demanding the proper to work and schooling.

Naqdi stated he was accosted by a Taliban fighter as quickly as he began taking photos.

‘They informed me ‘You can not movie’,’ he stated. ‘They arrested all those that have been filming and took their telephones.’

Journalists Neamat Naqdi (left) and Taqi Daryabi (proper) have been detained and severely crushed by the Taliban whereas protecting protests on Wednesday 

Journalist Neamat Naqdi (proper) was left with lash marks on his thighs after he was detained whereas protecting protests in Kabul on Wednesday. Taqi Daryabi (left) was left with ugly welts and bruises on his decrease again after spending hours in Taliban custody

Neamat Naqdi (left) and Taqi Daryabi (proper) arrive again at their places of work with facial wounds after being severally crushed by the Taliban who’re looking for to crush a rising wave of protests

It comes after two journalists, together with pictured Nemat Naqdi who works for Afghan information outlet Etilaat Roz, have been detained and severely crushed by the Taliban whereas protecting protests

Naqdi stated the Taliban tried to seize his digital camera, however he managed handy it to somebody in the crowd. Three Taliban fighters caught him, nevertheless, and took him to the police station the place the beatings began.

Taliban officers haven’t responded to repeated requests for remark. 

‘The Taliban began insulting me, kicking me,’ stated Naqdi, including that he was accused of being the organiser of the rally. He requested why he was being crushed, solely to be informed: ‘You are fortunate you were not beheaded’.

Naqdi was finally taken to a crowded cell the place he discovered his colleague, Daryabi, who had additionally been arrested and crushed.

‘We have been in a lot ache that we could not transfer,’ Daryabi stated.

Just a few hours later the pair have been launched with out clarification – despatched on their approach with a string of insults. ‘They see us as enemies,’ Taqi stated.

The Taliban have claimed they may uphold press freedoms – in line with unspecified Islamic ideas – though journalists are more and more being harassed protecting protests throughout the nation.

In latest days, dozens of journalists have reported being crushed, detained or prevented from protecting the protests, a present of resistance unthinkable below the Taliban’s final regime in the Nineties.

Most are Afghan journalists, whom the Taliban harass greater than the international media. 

Zaki Daryabi, chief of the Etilaat Roz newspaper, stated the Taliban’s phrases rang hole.

‘This official speech is completely completely different from the actuality that may be noticed on the floor.’ 

There have been different superficial indicators of the Taliban tightening their grip.

Images on social media confirmed the nation’s important airport – beforehand dubbed Hamid Karzai International, after the first post-Taliban president – had been renamed Kabul International.

A public vacation scheduled for Thursday honouring Ahmad Shah Massoud, the famed anti-Taliban resistance fighter assassinated 20 years in the past by an Al-Qaeda suicide squad, was additionally cancelled.

Meanwhile a senior Taliban official stated yesterday that ladies wouldn’t be allowed to play cricket – a well-liked sport in Afghanistan – or attainable another sport as a result of it was ‘not needed’ and their our bodies may be uncovered. 

On Thursday Cricket Australia stated it might cancel a historic maiden Test match in opposition to Afghanistan until the Taliban backtracks on the ban on ladies taking part in sport. 

Taliban leaders have vowed to respect individuals’s rights, together with these of girls, in accordance with Islamic sharia legislation, however those that have received higher freedoms over the previous 20 years are anxious about shedding them. 

Furious protesters took to the streets of the capital on Tuesday after the chief of the anti-Taliban resistance known as for a ‘nationwide rebellion’ in opposition to the militant group a day earlier.

Pictures confirmed feminine demonstrators arguing with Taliban fighters as one lady stared down an M-16 rifle pointed at her face. 

Footage taken on a cell phone exhibits a girl in an underground automobile park, panning round to disclose a crowd of girls and a few kids gathered in the similar house. The video is rapidly minimize quick after a person’s voice is heard shouting. 

Miraqa Popal, the head of reports at Afghanistan’s Tolo News outlet, shared the clip on Twitter, writing that some eyewitnesses stated the ladies have been held in Kabul’s Azizi Bank ‘to stop them from becoming a member of protesters’.  

An Afghan lady shouts throughout a protest. Many ladies are involved that hard-won rights shall be curtailed below the new regime

A feminine protester speaks with a Taliban fighter throughout a protest in Kabul on Tuesday

Many ladies have been amongst the protesters out in Kabul on Tuesday, the place they have been seen arguing with Taliban fighters

Footage taken on a cell phone exhibits a girl in an underground automobile park, panning round to disclose a crowd of girls and a few kids gathered in the similar house

The Taliban this week introduced an interim authorities made up primarily of ethnic Pashtun males together with wished terror suspects and Islamist hardliners, dashing worldwide hopes for a extra reasonable administration. 

The Taliban’s announcement of a brand new authorities on Tuesday was extensively seen as a sign they weren’t trying to broaden their base and current a extra tolerant face to the world, as that they had prompt they might do earlier than their army takeover.

Foreign international locations greeted the interim authorities with warning and dismay on Wednesday. In Kabul, dozens of girls took to the streets in protest.

Many critics known as on the management to respect fundamental human rights and revive the financial system, which faces collapse amid steep inflation, meals shortages and the prospect of international assist being slashed as international locations search to isolate the Taliban.

White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki stated nobody in the Biden administration ‘would recommend that the Taliban are revered and valued members of the world neighborhood.’

The European Union voiced its disapproval at the appointments, however stated it was able to proceed humanitarian help. Longer-term assist would rely on the Taliban upholding fundamental freedoms. 

The new performing Cabinet contains former detainees of the U.S. army jail at Guantanamo Bay, whereas the inside minister, Sirajuddin Haqqani, is needed by the United States on terrorism costs and carries a reward of $10 million.

His uncle, with a bounty of $5 million, is the minister for refugees and repatriation. 

But even as the Taliban consolidate energy, they face a monumental process in ruling Afghanistan, which is wracked with financial woes and safety challenges – together with from the Islamic State group’s native chapter.  

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated any worldwide legitimacy for the Taliban authorities must be ‘earned’, after main a 20-nation digital meeting on the Afghan disaster.

In Germany, Blinken stated the ministerial talks have been the ‘place to begin for worldwide coordination’ on coping with the Taliban. Among the international locations in the digital meeting have been European allies and historic Taliban backer Pakistan.

‘The Taliban search worldwide legitimacy. Any legitimacy – any help – must be earned,’ Blinken informed reporters.

The European Union stated the ‘caretaker’ authorities didn’t honour earlier vows of inclusion. China in the meantime stated it welcomed the finish of ‘three weeks of anarchy’, including it ‘attaches nice significance’ to the announcement of an interim authorities.

Qatar, the central middleman between the Taliban and the worldwide neighborhood in latest years, stated the Taliban had demonstrated ‘pragmatism’ of late.

Former Afghan president Ashraf Ghani, who fled the nation as the Taliban entered Kabul, apologised Wednesday to the Afghan individuals for a way his rule ended.    

The Taliban high brass, from the UN-sanctioned chief freed by the US three years in the past to the son of the one-eyed former chief Mullah Omar now serving as inside minister

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, Taliban co-founder and chief of the provisional authorities 

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, one among the co-founders of the Taliban, was free of jail in Pakistan three years in the past at the request of the U.S. authorities.  

Just 9 months in the past, he posed for photos with Donald Trump’s Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to signal a peace deal in Doha which at the moment lies in tatters.

Last month, his forces seized Kabul and he’s now tipped to turn out to be Afghanistan’s subsequent chief in a reversal of fortune which humiliates Washington.  

While Haibatullah Akhundzada is the Taliban’s total chief, Baradar is head of its political office and one among the most recognisable faces of the chiefs who’ve been concerned in peace talks in Qatar. 

In September 2020, Baradar was pictured with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who ‘urged the Taliban to grab this chance to forge a political settlement and attain a complete and everlasting ceasefire,’ the US stated in a press release

The 53-year-old was deputy chief below ex-chief Mullah Mohammed Omar, whose help for Al-Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden led to the US-led invasion of Afghanistan after 9/11. 

Baradar is reported to have flown instantly from Doha to Kabul on Sunday night as the militants have been storming the presidential palace. 

Born in Uruzgan province in 1968, Baradar was raised in Kandahar, the birthplace of the Taliban motion.

He fought with the mujahideen in opposition to the Soviets in the Nineteen Eighties till they have been pushed out in 1989.

Afterwards, Afghanistan was gripped by a blood civil battle between rival warlords and Baradar arrange an Islamic faculty in Kandahar along with his former commander Mohammed Omar.

The two mullahs helped to discovered the Taliban motion, an ideology which embraced hardline orthodoxy and strived for the creation of an Islamic Emirate. 

Fuelled by zealotry, hatred of grasping warlords and with monetary backing from Pakistan’s secret providers, the Taliban seized energy in 1996 after conquering provincial capitals earlier than marching on Kabul, simply as they’ve in latest months.

Baradar had a lot of completely different roles throughout the Taliban’s five-year reign and was the deputy defence minister when the US invaded in 2001.  

He went into hiding however remained lively in the Taliban’s management in exile.

In 2010, the CIA tracked him right down to the Pakistani metropolis of Karachi and in February of that year the Pakistani intelligence service (ISI) arrested him.

But in 2018, he was launched at the request of the Trump administration as a part of their ongoing negotiations with the Taliban in Qatar, on the understanding that he may assist dealer peace. 

In February 2020, Baradar signed the Doha Agreement in which the U.S. pledged to depart Afghanistan on the foundation that the Taliban would enter right into a power-sharing association with President Ashraf Ghani’s authorities in Kabul.

He was pictured in September with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who ‘urged the Taliban to grab this chance to forge a political settlement and attain a complete and everlasting ceasefire,’ the US stated in a press release.

Pompeo ‘welcomed Afghan management and possession of the effort to finish 40 years of battle and make sure that Afghanistan is just not a risk to the United States or its allies.’

The Doha deal was heralded as a momentous peace declaration however has been proved to be nothing however a ploy by the Taliban.

The jihadists waited till hundreds of American troops had left earlier than launching a significant offensive to recapture the nation, undoing 20 years of labor by the US-led coalition.

Haibatullah Akhundzada, the future Emir of Afghanistan and the Taliban’s Islamic figurehead

Haibatullah Akhundzada, the ‘Leader of the Faithful,’ is the Taliban’s Supreme Commander with the remaining phrase on its political, spiritual and army coverage.

Akhundzada is anticipated to take the title of Emir of Afghanistan.

Believed to be round 60-years-old, he’s not recognized for his army technique however is revered as an Islamic scholar and guidelines the Taliban by that proper. 

He took over in 2016 when the group’s former chief, Akhtar Mansour, was killed in a US drone strike on the Pakistani border.

After being appointed chief, Akhundzada secured a pledge of loyalty from Al Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri, who showered the spiritual scholar with reward – calling him ‘the emir of the trustworthy’.

This helped to seal his jihadi credentials with the group’s long-time allies. 

Akhundzada turned head of the Taliban’s council of non secular students after the US invasion and is believed to be the writer of lots of its fatwas (Islamic authorized rulings)

Akhundzada was tasked with the huge problem of unifying a militant motion that briefly fractured throughout a bitter energy wrestle following the assassination of his predecessor, and the revelation that the management had hid the loss of life of Taliban founder Mullah Omar for years.

The chief’s public profile has been largely restricted to the launch of annual messages throughout Islamic holidays.  

Akhundzada was born round 1959 to a spiritual scholar in the Panjwayi district of Kandahar Province.

His household have been pressured to flee their house throughout the Soviet invasion and he joined the resistance as a younger man.

He was one among the first new Taliban recruits in the Nineties and instantly impressed his superiors along with his data of Islamic legislation.

When the Taliban captured Afghanistan’s western Farah province, he was put in cost of combating crime in the space.

As the Taliban seized extra of the nation, Akhunzad turned head of the army court docket and deputy chief of its supreme court docket. 

After the US invasion in 2001 he turned head of the Taliban’s council of non secular students and is believed to be the writer of lots of its fatwas (Islamic authorized rulings), together with public executions of assassin and adulterers and chopping the fingers off thieves. 

Before being named the new chief he had been preaching and educating for round 15 years at a mosque in Kuchlak, a city in southwestern Pakistan, sources informed Reuters.  

Sirajuddin Haqqani, the son of the famed commander from the anti-Soviet jihad

Sirajuddin doubles as each the deputy chief of the Taliban motion whereas additionally heading the highly effective Haqqani community.

The Haqqani Network is a US-designated terror group that has lengthy been seen as one among the most harmful factions combating Afghan and US-led NATO forces in Afghanistan throughout the previous 20 years.

The group is notorious for its use of suicide bombers and is believed to have orchestrated a few of the most high-profile assaults in Kabul over the years.

An FBI wished poster for Sirajuddin Haqqani, the son of the famed commander from the anti-Soviet jihad

The community has additionally been accused of assassinating high Afghan officers and holding kidnapped Western residents for ransom – together with US soldier Bowe Bergdahl, launched in 2014.

Known for his or her independence, combating acumen, and savvy business dealings, the Haqqanis are believed to supervise operations in the rugged mountains of japanese Afghanistan, whereas holding appreciable sway over the Taliban’s management council.

Mullah Yaqoob, the son of the Taliban’s founder

The son of the Taliban’s founder Mullah Omar.

Mullah Yaqoob heads the group’s highly effective army fee, which oversees an unlimited community of subject commanders charged with executing the insurgency’s strategic operations in the battle.

His lineage and ties to his father – who loved a cult-like standing as the Taliban’s chief – serves as a potent image and makes him a unifying determine over a sprawling motion.

However hypothesis stays rife about Yaqoob’s actual function inside the motion, with some analysts arguing that his appointment to the function in 2020 was merely beauty.