Internal power struggle among Taliban leaders

A row appears to have broken out among the Taliban leadership between the more "moderate" camp and the hardliners: Abdul Ghani Baradar, the acting first deputy prime minister of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan and number two in the Islamist movement, disappeared several days ago. Rumours of his death or escape are circulating. Whether the Taliban's denials are credible remains to be seen.

Open/close all quotes
Jutarnji list (HR) /

Joint victory only unites for a short time

Once the common enemy has been defeated internal conflicts are inevitable, Jutarnji list points out:

“That's how it is with militant movements when they come to power: up until that moment they form a bloc. United by the enemy, internal disputes are ignored. And then comes the moment when they take power and the cohesion factor disappears and the centrifugal force starts to take effect. Even the Taliban are not spared from this law. ... According to information acquired by the BBC from Taliban sources, a serious conflict occurred immediately after the formation of the interim government: two opposing wings within the Taliban came to blows at the Kabul presidential palace. The reason was a dispute over who had contributed more to the victory.”

La Stampa (IT) /

Feud between politicians and traditionalists

There are fundamental differences between the "moderates" and the radical Haqqani network, La Stampa comments:

“On the one side is Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the leader of the more conciliatory Qatari wing, who negotiated with the Americans and didn't want the new Islamic emirate to become a pariah state isolated from the world. On the other side is the Haqqani clan and its Pakistani protectors, who are determined to turn back the clock by 20 years. The victory parades, the difficult evacuation of Westerners and Nato troops, and the first contradictory contacts with the media only masked the struggle behind the scenes initially.”