The acting provincial governor of northern Balkh province of Afghanistan Ata Mohammad Noor has said the killing of Taliban supreme leader Mullah Akhtar Mansoor may lead to more fighting and suicide attacks in coming weeks.
In an interview with Reuters, Noor said “Fighting may well pick up in some parts of the country after the killing of the Taliban leader, with suicide and bomb attacks (used) as a means of downplaying the importance of losing their leader.”
Noor further added that the authorities had to brace for a surge in violence as rival candidates established their claims to the leadership of the insurgency.
He also pointed to a spate of suicide bombings as well as the intense fighting that led to the temporary fall of the northern city of Kunduz last year as Mansoor looked to consolidate his newly won position.
In the meantime, Noor said some of the Taliban militants may surrender if the government works well pointing towards a scope for the government to exploit a likely fracturing in the insurgency.
This comes as the Taliban group issued a statement late on Monday stating that the death of the group’s leader will not have any impact on the insurgency activities of the group.
The statement by Taliban further added that the campaign by the Taliban militants is not for a single person which would end or become weak by his death, warning that the death of their leader will spark more revolution.
On the other hand, reports emerged Monday regarding the start of negotiations among the Taliban leadership council to appoint a successor for Mullah Akhtar Mansoor.
The reports further added that the leader of Haqqani terrorist network Sirajuddin Haqqani, Mullah Omar’s son and his brother are among the possible successors of Mullah Mansoor.