Sirajuddin Haqqani, the Taliban’s acting interior minister, inaugurated the Al-Fatha mosque inside the ministry in the presence of Timothy Weeks, a former professor at the American University of Afghanistan, according to a statement released by the Taliban Ministry of Interior on Saturday.

The Taliban government’s Ministry of Internal Affairs has released images and said that a mosque was founded using Sirajuddin Haqqani’s personal assets.

Sirajuddin Haqqani, the Taliban prominent figure returned to Kabul, the Afghan capital, fourteen days after Ayman al-Zawahiri, the chief of al-Qaeda, was killed in a US drone attack.

Sirajuddin Haqqani allegedly left the capital and fled to Paktika province with a convoy of civilians shortly after the US raid on Ayman al-Zawahiri’s residence in the Sherpur area of Kabul.

These sources state that one of Sirajuddin Haqqani’s relatives, who serves as the Taliban’s acting interior minister, apparently owned the house where the Al-Qaeda chief was attacked.

Later, in an interview, Zalmay Khalilzad, the former US Special representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Affairs, stated that the Haqqani network’s leaders were “certainly” aware of Ayman al-Zawahiri’s presence in Kabul.

The Taliban, on the other hand, said that the group was uninformed of the al-Qaeda leader’s stay in Kabul.

Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of Al-Qaeda, was killed earlier by a CIA drone assault in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, according to Joe Biden, the president of the US. The Taliban, however, condemned the US operation, calling it a violation of the Doha agreement.

According to the Washington Post’s report, Timothy Weeks is an Australian, who was taken as a hostage back in 2016 by Taliban forces and freed after three years of captivity as a part of the deal to release Taliban prisoners, with Sirajuddin Haqqani being one.

Weeks, who has converted to Islam in Taliban’s captivity, has returned to Kabul for celebrating the first anniversary of the Taliban rule in Afghanistan.

Author

  • Saqalain Eqbal is an Online Editor for Khaama Press. He is a Law graduate from The American University of Afghanistan (AUAF).