KABUL

- About 7 months after the Taliban seized power in Kabul in mid-August and the US forces withdrew from Afghanistan, the deputy leader of the Taliban movement and acting Afghan Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani appeared in public.

The second man in the Taliban movement - a few days ago - delivered a speech in front of the cameras and journalists at a graduation ceremony for the Afghan police in the capital, Kabul, in the presence of the ambassadors of China, Russia, Turkey, Qatar, Iran, Pakistan, Kazakhstan and the United Arab Emirates - although no country has yet officially recognized the new Afghan government - to By the representatives of the United Nations, the official channel broadcast the event live.

The appearance of Sirajuddin Haqqani - who is known among his supporters and friends as "Khalifa Sahib" - in public raised the question of why he appeared in front of the cameras and in the presence of a diplomat in the capital, Kabul, without removing his name from the US blacklist or recognizing his government.

The time and place - in which Haqqani decided to appear - was carefully chosen, according to a source close to Minister Haqqani, who told Al Jazeera Net, "The decision to appear after an American and foreign chase that lasted for two whole decades is very much, and it is time for him to appear among his supporters, so Haqqani wanted to tell his people." He is not afraid for his life after the American withdrawal, and the new government is in complete control of the security and field situation in Afghanistan."


As political researcher Hikmat Jalil says - to Al-Jazeera Net - "The appearance of the man about 7 months after the Taliban came to power, means that things are going in the right direction, and that the war will not return to Afghanistan as some promote it."

He added, "The man's remaining hidden from the media and people will indicate his weakness, and may send a negative message to the international and Afghan community that he is unable to protect himself, so how can he protect his people?"

It is noteworthy that most of the Taliban leaders in the past seven months have abandoned the security precautionary steps that have accompanied them for 20 years, and have appeared in front of the media, and even published their photos on social media with their real names, but it is not possible to be certain because of the appearance of Sirajuddin Haqqani in public, despite not canceling Washington has so far offered the $10 million reward for the arrest of Haqqani.

Writer and political researcher Abdullah Awab says to Al-Jazeera Net, "The world is busy these days with the Ukrainian crisis, and the Afghanistan file has become almost forgotten." It doesn't seem normal for a government, where one of its most important officials is hiding himself from his people."

While the Afghan people are wondering when the Taliban leader Sheikh Hebatullah Akhundzadeh and military leaders, such as Abdul Qayyum Zakir and Sadr Ibrahim, like Sirajuddin Haqqani, will appear.

Haqqani appears in public, even though he is wanted by an American, to confirm the Taliban's tightening of control over Afghanistan (French)

Who is Sirajuddin Haqqani?

Sirajuddin Haqqani was born in December 1979, in Zadran District, Paktia Province, and belongs to the largest Pashtun tribe, Zadran, in southeastern Afghanistan.

He studied forensic sciences under the patronage of his father, Sheikh Jalal al-Din Haqqani, one of the most famous leaders of the jihad against the Russians in the eighties of the last century. In 1984, his father enrolled him in the Anjuman Qur’an School for Contemporary Sciences.

Sirajuddin began his military activity in 2003 against US and foreign forces in Afghanistan, on the recommendation of his father, who had opposed the US invasion of the country since the fall of the first Taliban government in 2001.

In 2004, he participated in the first military operation against US forces in the state of Khost, and a source close to Minister Haqqani says - to Al Jazeera Net - "The Haqqani family chose the tribal city of Miranshah as a residence for it, and from there it monitored the security situation in Afghanistan, and from there Haqqani participated in the first confrontation military action against the American forces in the state of Khost.

The Taliban appointed him in 2006 as a military official for the southeastern states of "Logar, Paktia, Paktika, Khost", while in 2008 the United States listed him on its most wanted blacklist, and announced a financial reward of 10 million dollars for information on him.

In 2009, the fighters of Sirajuddin Haqqani, led by Senkin Khan, kidnapped the American soldier Bobergdahl, who was held for 5 years in the border strip between Afghanistan and Pakistan, until he was released in a Qatari-mediated exchange, according to which 5 senior Taliban leaders were released from Guantánamo Bay in 2014. During the era of former US President Barack Obama.


Haqqani Network

Siraj al-Din led the so-called "Haqqani Network", which between 2010 and 2019 carried out the most complex military operations against foreign and Afghan forces in all Afghan provinces, especially the capital, Kabul.

A source in the former Afghan intelligence told Al Jazeera Net, "The Haqqani network was choosing its targets inside the capital, Kabul, with great care and a well-thought-out plan, and it was striking at a time and place that the Afghan security services had not thought of, and it was carrying out double attacks, such as the two attacks at the Continental Hotel, and the intelligence was unable during the two decades to The past two years dealt a severe blow to her."

Sirajuddin Haqqani was appointed deputy to the late Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour in 2015, the first time that a deputy leader of the movement was chosen from outside Kandahar province (the traditional incubator of the movement) to be chosen as acting interior minister, after the Taliban movement came to power in 2021.

In the new ruling by Taliban, the Haqqani network controls the main security institutions in the new Afghan government, including the ministries of interior and intelligence and a number of other ministries.

At least 5 members of the Afghan government are the main leaders of the Haqqani network, but the Taliban say the Haqqani network is part of the "Islamic Emirate" and has no separate name or entity.

The writer and political researcher Assad Wahidi says - to Al-Jazeera Net - "The Taliban movement and even Sirajuddin Haqqani do not recognize the existence of the Haqqani network as a separate entity, and the inclusion of the United States of the Haqqani network in the list of terrorist groups is an American attempt to split the Taliban and divide it, but it was unable to do so."

The name of Haqqani and his network was associated with the implementation of suicide attacks, double operations, and kidnapping of foreigners to impose the movement's conditions in any negotiations, and this is what happened in the prisoner exchanges, which took place at least 3 times between the Taliban and Washington before its withdrawal from Afghanistan.

According to security sources, the Haqqani network carried out the first suicide attack in 2007, targeting German forces on the highway between Kabul and the city of Jalalabad.

At a gathering of Taliban supporters in Kandahar, Haqqani said, "Over the past two decades, I have trained and equipped 1,050 suicide bombers against US and foreign forces in Afghanistan. Obtaining (independence) would not have been easy, if it were not for these sacrifices."

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