Hardline cabinet in Kabul: worst fears confirmed

Contrary to their promises, the Taliban have presented a transitional Afghan government consisting solely of people from their own ranks. Security-related portfolios went to jihad-oriented Taliban and the interior minister is a wanted terrorist. Today's commentaries reflect the world's concerns.

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Neue Zürcher Zeitung (CH) /

On a collision course with their own population

The hardliners have once again prevailed, the Neue Zürcher Zeitung comments:

“In future, bearded men wearing turbans will sit in all important state positions. ... The signal to the outside world is clear: the victors of the war want to rule on their own terms, the defeated are to have no say in the matter. Contrary to initial promises, no other political forces have been involved. ... Nor will there be a single woman in the new government. ... With their new mullah regime, the Taliban are sending a devastating signal. But they are not doing themselves any favours with a government that excludes large sections of the population and gives enormous power to extreme elements. Without legitimacy among the people it will be difficult for them to govern in the longer term.”

thejournal.ie (IE) /

Close ties with Al Qaeda

Thejournal.iefocuses on the fact that Sirajuddin Haqqani, the founder of a terrorist group, has been appointed to the post of interior minister:

“An extremist Islamist organisation, the Haqqani network is aligned with Al Qaeda in Afghanistan. It is also aligned with and supportive of Al Qaeda networks throughout the Sahel in Africa. ...The centrality and prominence of the Haqqani network - and their Al Qaeda affiliates - at the centre of Taliban command and control in Kabul gives the international defence and intelligence community cause for grave concern.”

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (DE) /

No sign of stability

This list of ministers does not bode well for the future, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung fears:

“The predominance of the Pashtuns won't be to the liking of the other ethnic groups, which could increase resistance to the regime. And a government that says it is still looking for qualified staff is not a good prerequisite for keeping the state and the economy running after the abrupt takeover. Afghanistan will need humanitarian aid for the foreseeable future. This should not be denied to the country, because if it is, even more of its pitiable inhabitants will join the exodus.”

Habertürk (TR) /

Already clear who's on the guest list

Habertürk is concerned about how the global players will view the transitional government:

“It will not be easy for the government to gain broad international recognition. Countries like the US, Britain or Canada are declaring that they 'won't rush but will be keeping a close eye' on the country. Meanwhile, there are reports that China, Russia, Iran, Pakistan, Qatar and Turkey will be invited to the new government's inauguration ceremony. If this is true, it can be seen as a sign that they want both to break the West's resistance and prejudices and to cooperate with these countries first.”