This Article is written by Niyati Bhardwaj (pursuing BALLB from Jaipur National University)
Who are the Taliban?
The Taliban, a militant group that ruled Afghanistan in the late 1990s, has retaken control of the country. The rebels were driven from power by the US-led invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, but they never went away.
Now Taliban took control. Afghans rushed to the airports, one of the country’s final exit points, fearful of the future.
The Afghan government has had its most difficult month fighting the Taliban. As of this writing, the Taliban took control of 90% of the country such major cities are Kabul, Mazar-i-Sharif, Herat, Kandahar, Lashkar Gah etc.
President of Afghanistan fled, saying he had chosen to leave to avoid further bloodshed. It’s not clear where he went.
Who leads the Taliban?
The Rahbari Shura, also known as the Quetta Shura, is the Taliban’s leadership council. It is named after the city in Pakistan where Mullah Mohammed Omar, the Taliban’s first leader, and his top advisers are thought to have sought refuge after the US invasion. (After Omar’s death in 2013, Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour became the new leader, but he was killed in a 2016 US airstrike in Pakistan) According to the UN monitor, the council decides on all “political and military concerns of the Emirate.” Mawlawi Hibatullah Akhundzada, who hasn’t been seen in public in years, is the current leader.
The leadership council supervises different commissions and administrative organs through which the Taliban run a shadow government, comparable to the ministries in place previous to the Taliban’s takeover. Economic, educational, health, and outreach are among the topics covered by the commissions. For each of Afghanistan’s thirty-four provinces, the military commission picks shadow governors and battlefield commanders. The political commission was situated in Doha, Qatar, and was in charge of peace discussions with the US.
Men who are labelled terrorists by the US and sanctioned by the UN are among the Taliban’s new thirty-three-member caretaker administration. Acting Prime Minister Mohammad Hassan Akhund is a longtime friend of Omar’s who has served in a number of key positions over the last two decades. Akhund’s deputy is Taliban co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who previously served as the chairman of the Taliban’s political council. The acting interior minister is Sirajuddin Haqqani, the acting leader of the Haqqani Network, a militant organisation with deep ties to the Taliban, al-Qaeda, and Pakistan’s intelligence agencies operating in Afghanistan’s southeast and Pakistan’s northwest. Omar’s son, Mullah Muhammad Yaqoub, is functioning as his father’s representative. Omar’s son, Mullah Muhammad Yaqoub, is acting defence minister.
What are the state of the Taliban’s finances and international support?
According to the UN monitoring group, the Taliban made the majority of their money from criminal operations including opium poppy farming, drug trafficking, extortion of local companies, and kidnapping prior to their takeover. Their yearly revenue is estimated to be between $300 million and $1.6 billion. In 2020, they are expected to generate roughly $460 million from opium poppy production, according to one estimate. Despite UN sanctions, they have supplemented their finances with illegal mining and foreign donations. Under the new administration, it’s unclear how the Taliban’s revenue sources would shift.
Many experts believe that in order to counter India’s influence in Afghanistan, Pakistan’s security apparatus continues to provide financial and logistical support to the Taliban, including providing safe haven for Taliban terrorists. Islamabad denies the allegations. (At the same time, Pakistan has been fighting its own insurgency group, Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, also known as the Pakistani Taliban and distinct from the Afghan Taliban.)
What could happen next?
It’s still unclear how the Taliban intend to administer Afghanistan.
But mainly it will affect the two things:-
- Women face uncertain future such as freedom to work, dress as they choose, Right to Education, Rights of Women and Minorities, Right to Speak, etc. (During the 1990s the Taliban forced women to dress in certain waysand denied them equal rights.)
- Another major issue is the country will once againbecome a training groups ofterrorism.
Relation of China with Taliban:
Beijing will have a two-pronged engagement with the Taliban. First and foremost, it will be Chinese mercantile. China will try to revive Afghan commercial operations, which the Taliban are likely to support because the investment will bring in much-needed funds. The Afghan economy is unstable, and it is heavily reliant on foreign money from Western donors, which would almost definitely be stopped off.
Second, the connection will be contingent on neither party interfering with the other’s internal concerns. For Beijing, this means the Taliban cannot transmit extremism to China’s problematic Xinjiang region, which shares a small border with Afghanistan or protest Chinese government crimes against Uyghur Muslims there. For the Taliban, this means that unless individuals are engaged, China will not question the group’s human rights violations.
Relation of Pakistan with Taliban:
It is true that Pakistan is in favour of a Taliban victory. After the Taliban took control over Afghanistan, the Pakistani Pri e Minister Imran Khan declared that the Taliban were breaking the chains of slavery.
There are basically three reasons which show that the Pakistan government support the Taliban. Firstly, Pakistan’s ideological interests in the Taliban are vested. Pakistan was founded in 1947 as a Muslim country, with Islam serving as the “glue” that was expected to bind together numerous distinct populations with various linguistic and ethnic identities. This, however, was a battle. Following a bloody civil war, a major chunk of Pakistani territory in the east inhabited by the Bengali-speaking community seceded to form Bangladesh in 1971. The Pakistani government became particularly concerned about the western provinces of Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which have sizable Pashtun or Pashto-speaking communities, as a result of this loss. In these areas, Pakistan established madrassas to promote and teach a more austere version of Islam with the goal of suppressing Pashtun nationalism. Taliban leaders were educated in those madrassas, which also promote Islamic nationalism.
Secondly, Pakistani officials are concerned about the Afghan border and feel that a Taliban rule will alleviate their fears. The Durand Line, which separates Pakistani Pashtun-dominated areas from Afghanistan, has been rejected by the Afghan government since 1947. Afghanistan, which has a Pashtun majority, claims these lands as part of a traditional Pashtun homeland known as “Pashtunistan.” According to Pakistan’s government, the Taliban’s ideology prioritises Islam over Pashtun identity.
Thirdly, It is critical for Pakistan to develop a government in Afghanistan that is sympathetic to Pakistan. Pakistan accuses India of attempting to destabilise and break apart the country by using its ethnic and linguistic differences. The good relations between India and the government of former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani did nothing to alleviate this fear. A Taliban government might aid Pakistan’s counter-insurgency efforts, especially by offering a safe haven for anti-India jihadists.
Rights of afganistan runied by taliban.
The United States’ influence and international pressure have resulted in a significant increase in women’s rights over the last two decades. Girls as young as ten years old began to obtain an education. Young women had a chance to do something other than stay at home. That progress is now in jeopardy of being lost. Some Afghans are concerned that, despite the Taliban’s pretence of being more moderate this time, they cannot be trusted to respect women’s rights and that the old rule of law will be restored.
Over the previous two decades, the United States’ influence and international pressure have resulted in a major growth in women’s rights. Girls as young as ten years old were given the opportunity to receive an education. Young women were given the opportunity to do things other than stay at home. Now that progress is under peril, it may be lost. Despite the Taliban’s pretence of being more moderate this time, some Afghans are anxious that they cannot be trusted to respect women’s rights and that the old rule of law will be resurrected.