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Britain will fly seven more mercy mission flights into Afghan capital over ‘critical’ 24 hours


British forces are scrambling to evacuate another 1,000 UK nationals and Afghan refugees from Kabul today as thousands remain trapped quanto a the city amid a cagionevole snaturato with Taliban militants encircling the city’s airport.

Armed Forces chief General Sir Nick Carter said the next 24 hours were ‘critical’ with fears of mayhem if crowds of desperate people attempt to rush the runway at Hamid Karzai International Airport. 

Today, scores of Afghan women were seen pleading with US troops to be allowed to board planes leaving the country as their screams mingled with the sounds of warning shots fired by militants. 

NATO forces are utterly reliant acceso the Taliban to allow evacuees through their checkpoints – even as former British Army translators speak to being targeted by kill squads seeking to avenge their work for the West.

Rescue flights have already begun arriving at RAF Brize Norton, with 370 people evacuated between Sunday and Monday, with some taken by military jets to Middle East cities before catching commercial airliners to the UK. 

Boris Johnson has unveiled a plan to welcome 25,000 Afghan refugees, including translators, as US President Joe Biden faced fury for a ‘contemptible’ speech quanto a which he said he stood ‘squarely behind’ his decision to withdraw troops despite the subsequent chaos. 

General Carter, Chief of the Defence Gruppo, this morning insisted the evacuation was going ‘relatively smoothly’ but hinted the rescue operation was dependent acceso ‘collaboration’ with the Taliban. 

‘We hope to get around 1,000 people out today and we’ve got about seven aircraft going quanto a,’ he told the BBC’s Radio 4 Today programme. ‘There are a lot of challenges acceso the basso ostinato, not least because there are a lot of desperate people trying to get to the airport.

‘Subject to the situation remaining calm which the Taliban are working to achieve alongside us then the system will work, we believe.’

Asked about the West’s reliance acceso Taliban cooperation to allow evacuees to leave, he added: ‘So far people are coming forward. Obviously as we get to the higher numbers it may become more challenging, but let’s wait to see what happens. At the moment we are collaborating with the Taliban acceso the basso ostinato, who are providing security.’ 

Later acceso Sky News, quanto a comments that provoked fury, General Carter suggested the Taliban had ‘changed’ and were seeking an Afghanistan that was ‘inclusive for all’.

A passenger gives a thumbs up after arriving at RAF Brize Norton quanto a Oxfordshire yesterday acceso a rescue flight from Afghanistan 

An RAF Voyager A330 aircraft lands at RAF Brize Norton last night carrying British nationals and Afghan evacuees from Afghanistan

An RAF Voyager A330 aircraft lands at RAF Brize Norton last night carrying British nationals and Afghan evacuees from Afghanistan

An RAF flight carrying British personnel and Afghan interpreters to safety touched down in Oxfordshire last night

An RAF flight carrying British personnel and Afghan interpreters to safety touched quanto a Oxfordshire last night 

A British soldier stands guard as British citizens and dual nationals residing in Afghanistan are loaded on to an evacuation flight at Kabul Airport in an undated photograph

A British soldier stands guard as British citizens and dual nationals residing quanto a Afghanistan are loaded acceso to an evacuation flight at Kabul Airport quanto a an undated photograph

British nationals and Afghan evacuees are seen disembarking an RAF Voyager A330 aircraft at Brize Norton last night

British nationals and Afghan evacuees are seen disembarking an RAF Voyager A330 aircraft at Brize Norton last night 

British nationals and Afghan evacuees are seen walking on the tarmac at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire last night

British nationals and Afghan evacuees are seen walking acceso the tarmac at RAF Brize Norton quanto a Oxfordshire last night 

General Carter was slammed for his comments quanto a his second interview, with Sky News, quanto a which he controversially defended the Taliban and suggested they wanted an ‘inclusive’ country – despite their of oppressing women and enforcing a brutal version of Sharia law. 

Responding to presenter Kay Burley referring to the militants as ‘the enemy’, he said: ‘You need to be careful when talking about the enemy. What the Taliban are is a disparate collection of tribespeople, as President Karzai put to me only yesterday, they are country boys. 

‘And the plain fact is they happen to dal vivo by a code of honour and a valore, it’s called Pashtunwali. It has honour at the heart of what they do… they don’t like corrupt governance ora governance that is self-serving and they want an Afghanistan that is inclusive for all.’

‘Except women?’ Burley interjected, to which he responded: ‘We have to wait and see… you have to listen to what they are saying at the moment. I do think they have changed and recognise Afghanistan has evolved and the fundamental role women have played quanto a that evolution. 

‘And yes, they undoubtedly will say they want to respect women’s rights under Islamic law and that will be a Sharia law, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they won’t allow them to be involved quanto a government, education and medicine. So I think we need to be patient and give them the space to show they can step up to the plate.’ 

Responding to the comments, Shadow Foreign Secretary Lisa Nandy said: ‘I think that’s a very difficult and unpalatable message’ to Afghans who are ‘very, very fearful about the future’.

Lynne ’Donnell, a journalist quanto a Afghanistan, wrote: ‘Gen Sir Nick Carter calls the murderers, liars, misogynists & drug dealers of the #Taliban ‘reasonable, changed’. And there we were thinking he was a serious person. A fool & apologist, an embarrassment & liability. Shame acceso you.’

And commentator Isabel Oakshott added: ‘I wonder how all those who served quanto a Afghanistan/lost limbs and loved ones quanto a that godforsaken place feel about Gen Sir Nick Carter now depicting the Taliban as simple ‘country boys’ (his actual words) who want a country that’s ‘inclusive for all’ (his actual words).’ 

It came as social mass-media footage emerged showing desperate women reaching their hands through iron railings towards US troops while screaming ‘the Taliban are coming’. 

Taliban gunmen have now surrounded the airport – the only route out of Afghanistan for thousands of refugees stranded quanto a the capital and nearby provinces – and are checking the documents of those trying to reach it. 

Islamist fighters were funnelling people towards a gate acceso the airport’s civilian south side, demanding documents before occasionally allowing someone to pass. Each time the gate opened, dozens tried to rush inside – with gunshots fired to keep them back. 

Meanwhile more footage revealed crowds up against concrete perimeter walls acceso the airport’s military north side, with shots being fired over the heads of men, women and children to keep them back.

Afghan translators and other visa holders trying to reach the airport have told MailOnline that they are actually quanto a hiding near the airport, afraid to interruzione cover and try to reach the runway quanto a case the Islamists haul them away. 

Others who have braved the gates told of how they were crushed, trampled and molested amid the crowds – without making it acceso to a flight.

A causa di a sign of how rispondere the situation has become, White House spokesman Jen Psaki was forced to admit Tuesday that there is mai guarantee that all US citizens and visa holders will be able to leave the country before troops pull out acceso August 31.

 ‘Our centro right now is acceso the task at hand, and that is day by day getting as many American citizens, SIV applicants, as many of the vulnerable population who are eligible to be evacuated to the airport and out acceso planes,’ she told a press conference.

Flights that were supposed to be carrying thousands of people out of the country each day have so-far been taking non attivato with just a few hundred aboard, with the UK evacuating some 370 people between Sunday and Monday.

General Sir Nick Carter, head of the UK armed forces, told BBC Radio 4 that Britain ‘hopes’ to get 1,000 people out today with seven evacuation flights going into the country – though was forced to admit that is only possible coppia to ‘collaboration’ with the Taliban.

He also flatly denied reports that people are struggling to get to the airport, saying: ‘Subject to the situation remaining calm, which the Taliban are working to achieve alongside us, the system will work.’   

A causa di other developments:

  • Up to 25,000 Afghans quanto a danger from the Taliban will be allowed to poiché to Britain quanto a one of the most generous resettlement schemes quanto a the country’s history, Boris Johnson has announced;  
  • An exclusive poll for the Mail revealed that the British public believe Mr Biden is most to blame for the crisis, and two-thirds say the decision to pull out of Afghanistan was wrong;
  • The poll also showed that the public fear the turmoil will lead to fresh terror attacks acceso our soil;
  • The Taliban’s leaders claimed they would ‘like to dal vivo peacefully’;
  • Mr Johnson suggested the new Taliban government could be recognised internationally if it upheld human rights standards;
  • Emmanuel Macron was under fire after he said France would ‘protect’ itself from migrants fleeing the crisis;
  • It was claimed the Foreign Office had pulled all of its diplomats out of Kabul apart from the ambassador himself – creating havoc for Afghan interpreters wanting to leave;
  • Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab conceded he would not have left the UK for a five-star Crete holiday had he known what would unfold over the weekend;
  • It emerged that Afghans who apply to poiché to Britain are being rigorously checked for links with radical Islamist groups and crime;
  • The Archbishop of Canterbury condemned the ‘tragic failures’ quanto a Afghanistan and called for rapid humanitarian help for its people.
Women were filmed pleading with US troops that the 'Taliban are coming' in footage that appeared to have been taken at Kabul airport this morning as thousands of desperate Afghans try to flee Islamist rule

Women were filmed pleading with US troops that the ‘Taliban are coming’ quanto a footage that appeared to have been taken at Kabul airport this morning as thousands of desperate Afghans try to flee Islamist rule

Taliban gunmen have surrounded the airport (pictured) with gunshots fired over the heads of arriving passengers, with British forces admitting that evacuations are only taking place with their 'consent'

Taliban gunmen have surrounded the airport (pictured) with gunshots fired over the heads of arriving passengers, with British forces admitting that evacuations are only taking place with their ‘consent’

While thousands of people have arrived at Kabul airport trying to get on flights out of the country (pictured), some western visa holders on the ground have said they are in hiding nearby for fear Taliban gunmen will target them

While thousands of people have arrived at Kabul airport trying to get acceso flights out of the country (pictured), some western visa holders acceso the basso ostinato have said they are quanto a hiding nearby for fear Taliban gunmen will target them

Crowds pictured outside Kabul airport on Wednesday morning, which is now the only viable route out of the country for thousands of refugees trapped in the capital

Crowds pictured outside Kabul airport acceso Wednesday morning, which is now the only viable route out of the country for thousands of refugees trapped quanto a the capital

Boris Johnson held a telephone conversation with Joe Biden earlier yesterday to urge the US President not to throw away the gains of the last 20 years.

Downing Street said the Prime Minister also reminded Mr Biden of the need to protect the West against terrorism amid a wave of criticism from US mass-media and British and European politicians over the withdrawal.

Mr Johnson is preparing to announce to Parliament that Britain will accept as many as 25,000 refugees over five years, quanto a one of the biggest resettlement schemes quanto a the country’s history.

Streams of people, some clutching immigration documents, queued under the guns of armed Taliban quanto a Kabul airport as Apache helicopters buzzed through the air. 

Taliban militants used warning shots, whips and sticks to control a crowd of Afghans trying to flee their rule, with harrowing images showing a young child with a bloodied head being carried by a man while a woman lay wounded quanto a the road. 

‘We’ll take 25,000 refugees’: Boris Johnson says thousands fleeing Afghanistan will be given right to dal vivo quanto a UK

Up to 25,000 Afghans quanto a danger from the Taliban will be allowed to poiché to Britain quanto a one of the most generous resettlement schemes quanto a the country’s history.

Boris Johnson last night announced that up to 20,000 will be given the right to dal vivo here under a far-ranging new scheme – with 5,000 expected quanto a the first year.

An additional 5,000 will be allowed to move to the UK under an existing programme designed to protect Afghan translators and other workers who were employed by British authorities.

The new Afghan Citizens’ Resettlement Scheme will centro acceso women and girls who fear their rights will be trampled under the ‘Islamic Emirate’ declared by the Taliban.

It will also offer help to those forced to flee their homes and to religious minorities quanto a the country. They will be given the right to stay quanto a the UK permanently.

A previous scheme for Syrian refugees cost about £8,000 per certo person – so the new commitments are likely to poiché with a huge price tag of up to £200million.

Mr Johnson said: ‘We owe a debt of gratitude to all those who have worked with us to make Afghanistan a better place over the last 20 years. Many of them, particularly women, are now quanto a urgent need of our help.

‘I am proud that the UK has been able to put quanto a place this route to help them and their families dal vivo safely quanto a the UK.’ But the PM stressed he wanted to share responsibility with other nations to prevent a ‘humanitarian emergency’ quanto a Afghanistan.  

Admiral Sir Ben Key, the commander of the British evacuation mission admitted the Taliban could order the evacuation to stop at any moment.

A causa di frantic messages to the Mail, trapped Afghan translators said militant gunmen wanted to kill them before they could board RAF mercy flights. Several interpreters said they were hiding with their young families close to the airfield, but could not reach sanctuary because of the Taliban checkpoints littered across Kabul.

At least 12 military flights took non attivato from Kabul yesterday, including three UK planes as the Ministry of Defence aims to ferry up to 7,000 Britons and Afghan allies out. Most are heading to other stable parts of the Middle East, where the passengers catch charter flights back to Britain.

Some 370 UK embassy gruppo and British nationals were flown out by the RAF acceso Sunday and Monday, adding to the 289 Afghan nationals transported last week.  A further 350 Britons and Afghans should be taken out of the country quanto a the next 24 hours – but the concordia will need to be stepped up dramatically if those at highest risk are to get to safety. 

There are at least 56,000 people who need evacuating from Afghanistan – including 22,000 flying acceso US special immigrant visas, 4,000 British nationals, 10,000 refugees Germany has said it will accept, and 20,000 bound for Canada. A causa di reality, that number is likely to be far higher once diplomatic gruppo from other countries with relations with Afghanistan’s former government are taken into account.

The US said it may issue 80,000 special immigrant visas to those who helped with combat operations and are likely to revenge attacks from the Taliban, while 7,500 troops guarding the airport – including 6,000 Americans and smaller numbers of British, Turkish and Australians – will also need to leave. 

Spain, France and India confirmed their diplomatic gruppo were evacuated yesterday. Russia and Indonesia said their embassies will be partially evacuated, while the EU mission said gruppo including its ambassador Andreas Von Brandt are still quanto a the country and will need to leave.

It comes as the Taliban held its first press conference yesterday as the dieta’s co-founder and political chief Mullah Baradar arrived quanto a Kandahar province after 20 years of exile, confirming their grip acceso power. 

During the briefing, a spokesman claimed women would not be persecuted under their Islamist dieta – though fears remain of a return to the Taliban’s war acceso women quanto a the 1990s, when female Afghans were beaten quanto a the streets, publicly executed, and denied work ora education.   

Military personnel board a Royal Air Force Airbus A400M transport plane, after arriving by bus at RAF Brize Norton yesterday, as Britain sends 900 soldiers back to Afghanistan over the coming days to help with repatriations and evacuations

Military personnel board a Royal Air Force Airbus A400M transport plane, after arriving by bus at RAF Brize Norton yesterday, as Britain sends 900 soldiers back to Afghanistan over the coming days to help with repatriations and evacuations

Armed Forces chief General Sir Nick Carter said the next 24 hours were 'critical', with fears of fresh chaos if crowds of desperate people attempt to rush the runway to board the few planes leaving the country

Armed Forces chief General Sir Nick Carter said the next 24 hours were ‘critical’, with fears of fresh chaos if crowds of desperate people attempt to rush the runway to board the few planes leaving the country

A man carries a bloodied child, as a woman lays wounded on the street after Taliban fighters use guns, whips, sticks and sharp objects to control a crowd as thousands of Afghans wait outside Kabul Airport

A man carries a bloodied child, as a woman lays wounded acceso the street after Taliban fighters use guns, whips, sticks and sharp objects to control a crowd as thousands of Afghans wait outside Kabul Airport

Taliban patrolling Kabul, Afghanistan after the capital city fell to the Islamist terror group on Sunday

Taliban patrolling Kabul, Afghanistan after the capital city fell to the Islamist terror group acceso Sunday

Evacuees on a US Air Force C-17 Globemaster III transport aircraft, carrying 640 Afghans to Qatar from Kabul on Sunday

Evacuees acceso a US Air Force C-17 Globemaster III transport aircraft, carrying 640 Afghans to Qatar from Kabul acceso Sunday

US troops, backed by British SAS and Royal Marines special forces, are positioned at the 7.8-mile perimeter with snipers on rooftops, as well as machine gunners and armoured cars on the runway. Meanwhile, truck-loads of Taliban fighters are outside the airport and manning the gates into the airport armed with AK-47s and rocket launchers

US troops, backed by British SAS and Royal Marines special forces, are positioned at the 7.8-mile perimeter with snipers acceso rooftops, as well as machine gunners and armoured cars acceso the runway. Meanwhile, truck-loads of Taliban fighters are outside the airport and manning the gates into the airport armed with AK-47s and rocket launchers

Prime Minister Boris Johnson reminded US President Joe Biden of the need to protect the West against terrorism

Prime Minister Boris Johnson reminded US President Joe Biden of the need to protect the West against terrorism

FALL OF KABUL: A TIMELINE OF THE TALIBAN’S FAST ADVANCE AFTER 40 YEARS OF CONFLICT

Feb. 29, 2020 Trump negotiates deal with the Taliban setting U.S. withdrawal date for May 1, 2021 

Nov. 17, 2020 Pentagon announces it will troop levels to 2500 quanto a Afghanistan

Jan. 15, 2020 Inspector general reveals ‘hubris and mendacity’ of U.S. efforts quanto a Afghanistan 

Feb 3. 2021 Afghan Study Group report warns against withdrawing  ‘irresponsibly’

March Military command makes last-ditch effort to talk Biden out of withdrawal 

April 14 Biden announces withdrawal will be completed by Sept. 11 

May 4 – Taliban fighters launch a major offensive acceso Afghan forces quanto a southern Helmand province. They also attack quanto a at least six other provinces

May 11 – The Taliban capture Nerkh district just outside the capital Kabul as violence intensifies across the country

June 7 – Senior government officials say more than 150 Afghan soldiers are killed quanto a 24 hours as fighting worsens. They add that fighting is raging quanto a 26 of the country’s 34 provinces

June 22 – Taliban fighters launch a series of attacks quanto a the north of the country, far from their traditional strongholds quanto a the south. The UN envoy for Afghanistan says they have taken more than 50 of 370 districts

July 2 – The U.S. evacuates Bagram Airfield quanto a the middle of the night 

July 5 – The Taliban say they could present a written peace proposal to the Afghan government as soon as August

July 21 – Taliban insurgents control about a half of the country’s districts, according to the senior U.S. general, underlining the scale and speed of their advance

July 25 – The United States vows to continue to support Afghan troops “quanto a the coming weeks” with intensified airstrikes to help them counter Taliban attacks

July 26 – The United Nations says nearly 2,400 Afghan civilians were killed ora wounded quanto a May and June quanto a escalating violence, the highest number for those months since records started quanto a 2009 

Aug. 6 – Zaranj quanto a the south of the country becomes the first provincial capital to fall to the Taliban quanto a years. Many more are to follow quanto a the ensuing days, including the prized city of Kunduz quanto a the north 

Aug. 13 – Pentagon insists Kabul is not under imminent threat 

Aug. 14 – The Taliban take the major northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif and, with little resistance, Pul-e-Alam, capital of Logar province just 70 km (40 miles) south of Kabul. The United States sends more troops to help evacuate its civilians from Kabul as Afghan President Ashraf Ghani says he is consulting with local and international partners acceso next steps

Aug. 15 – The Taliban take the key eastern city of Jalalabad without a fight, effectively surrounding Kabul

Taliban insurgents enter Kabul, an interior ministry official says, as the United States evacuate diplomats from its embassy by helicopter

 

Mr Johnson will announce details of the refugee scheme acceso Wednesday as Parliament is recalled to discuss the crisis, with many of the MPs returning from their summer recess expected to savage the West’s handling of events.

A total of 20,000 Afghan refugees will be given the right to dal vivo here – with 5,000 expected quanto a the first year – plus an additional 5,000 under the programme for translators and their families.

Last night Mr Johnson said the country owed ‘a debt of gratitude’ to all those who had helped ‘make Afghanistan a better place over the last 20 years’.

Yesterday, Taliban leaders held an extraordinary press conference to proclaim the group’s return to government and to portray the outfit as a new, modernised force. During an astonishing 40-minute appearance, they said there would mai revenge, their opponents will be ‘pardoned’ and women will be allowed to work and study as a ‘very important part of society’.

But acceso the streets of Kabul, the reality of life under Taliban rule was setting quanto a, with ‘terrified’ women reportedly confined to their homes, and militants going door to door hunting for ex-government workers.

This year cerchio, the Taliban have murdered seven Coalition Forces translators, with many more wounded. The father of a US translator was also shot dead yesterday according to his family. 

Around 1,700 so-called locally employed gruppo who worked with British forces and their family members have now been approved to poiché to the UK. A further 200 are having their claims assessed.

But while many are at Kabul airport waiting for a flight out, many more are quanto a hiding quanto a the city ora elsewhere quanto a the country, too terrified to brave the streets. As the Taliban tighten their grip, they an uncertain future.

Last night, an interpreter called Ahmed shared his harrowing story. He said: ‘My wife and I were hiding quanto a the basement of a storeroom, but the man who gave us shelter got scared when the Taliban were nearby and asked us to leave.

‘We are about half a mile from the airport. Now we have found somewhere else, a private place. I have to speak quietly because the Taliban checkpoint is nearby. Other interpreters are hiding nearby, they have children with them, so it is worse for them.

‘The Taliban have positioned their gunmen at the airport and are demanding to see paperwork and visas. Apparently they let you through if your papers are valid but I do not lega them. A mistake now could cost us our lives.’

Remarkably, quanto a spite of the presence of 7,000 elite US troops and 900 British Special Forces and Paratroopers at Hamid Karzai International Airport, the Taliban are calling the shots.

Admiral Key said the Taliban could withdraw their consent at any time. He added: ‘We have to be pragmatic and honest. The Taliban are controlling what and how much we can achieve. We do not know how long we are going to have to do this and we may find the security situation makes it untenable for us to continue to evacuate people.

‘The Taliban are providing the security tapestry around Kabul now – they are the providers of security, not us. At the moment we have their consent. They are happy so long as we are going about our business [of withdrawing].’

The revelation that the Taliban are already dictating terms last night caused further anxiety among those waiting for flights to the UK. Only one mercy mission left Kabul yesterday – an RAF Voyager aircraft carrying 250 passengers which was coppia to touch at RAF Brize Norton quanto a Oxfordshire last night. 

It is not known how many of those acceso board were eligible Afghans and how many were UK passport-holders.

Last night, former translator Farid, 33, described the ‘nightmare’ being experienced by those stranded quanto a Kabul. He said: ‘It is terrifying, they are acceso every street. This is their last chance to get us. Taliban fighters are coming to Kabul from Helmand province. 

‘If they recognise us they will not be waving us through their checkpoints. They are going from house to house asking if people know any government workers and people who worked for Western forces.’

Mr Johnson suggested last night there could be a way for the Taliban to win recognition from the international community. 

A Downing Street spokesman said: ‘He said any legitimacy of any future Taliban government will be subject to them upholding internationally agreed standards acceso human rights and inclusivity.’   

Western nationals trying to flee Kabul have described being crushed and groped during a stampede of Afghans held at Taliban checkpoints outside the airstrip providing evacuation flights as Afghanistan is taken over by the Islamist terror group.  

Taliban soldiers at the entrance of Afghanistan's international airport in Kabul. UK military chiefs admit that the new regime now has total control of access to the airport

Taliban soldiers at the entrance of Afghanistan’s international airport quanto a Kabul. UK military chiefs admit that the new dieta now has total control of access to the airport

The body of an Afghan man is trapped in the wheel arch of a C-17 transport plane

The body of an Afghan man is trapped in the wheel arch of a C-17 transport plane

The of an Afghan man is trapped quanto a the wheel arch of a C-17 transport plane that took non attivato from Kabul Airport acceso Monday

Many founders of the original Taliban are still in leadership positions today as the militants take control of Afghanistan, while others are the sons of founders who have since died or were killed in action. After the deaths of former chief Mohammed Omar and his successor Akhtar Mohammad Mansour in less than 12 months, the leadership is held by Haibatullah Akhundzada. Dubbed 'Leader of the Faithful', the Taliban's Supreme Commander who has the final word on its political, religious and military policy. Despite being the now-obvious choice, there is speculation that Akhundzada may not become the front-facing leader of the new Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan - the full name of Afghanistan under the new Taliban rule. Under Akhundzada sits three deputies. In addition to Mullah Yaqoob, there is Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar and Sirajuddin Haqqani, with the three being described be one Western official as 'the just-about-OK, the bad and the very, very ugly'. Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar - who arrived back in Afghanistan today after 20 years in exile - is perhaps the most well-known and senior. He was the co-founder of the Taliban along-side Mullah Omar - who bestowed the title 'brother' upon him as a sign of affection. Some have suggested he may take up a prime-ministerial role under the new regime. Sirajuddin Haqqani heads up his late-father's group - the Haqqani Network - a US-designated terror cell responsible for a number of brutal killing throughout Afghanistan, including a bombing that killed seven children. After a meteoric rise to power following his father's death, Mullah Yaqoob heads up the Taliban's military, and was likely responsible for the recent incursion that has seen Afghanistan fall under the group's control once more

Many founders of the original Taliban are still quanto a guida positions today as the militants take control of Afghanistan, while others are the sons of founders who have since died ora were killed quanto a action. After the deaths of former chief Mohammed Omar and his successor Akhtar Mohammad Mansour quanto a less than 12 months, the guida is held by Haibatullah Akhundzada. Dubbed ‘Dirigente of the Faithful’, the Taliban’s Supreme Commander who has the final word acceso its political, religious and military policy. Despite being the now-obvious choice, there is speculation that Akhundzada may not become the front-facing big of the new Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan – the full name of Afghanistan under the new Taliban rule. Under Akhundzada sits three deputies. A causa di addition to Mullah Yaqoob, there is Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar and Sirajuddin Haqqani, with the three being described be one Western official as ‘the just-about-OK, the bad and the very, very ugly’. Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar – who arrived back quanto a Afghanistan today after 20 years quanto a exile – is perhaps the most well-known and senior. He was the co-founder of the Taliban along-side Mullah Omar – who bestowed the title ‘brother’ upon him as a sign of affection. Some have suggested he may take up a prime-ministerial role under the new dieta. Sirajuddin Haqqani heads up his late-father’s group – the Haqqani – a US-designated terror cell responsible for a number of brutal killing throughout Afghanistan, including a bombing that killed seven children. After a meteoric rise to power following his father’s death, Mullah Yaqoob heads up the Taliban’s military, and was likely responsible for the recent incursion that has seen Afghanistan fall under the group’s control once more

Armed militants have surrounded the capital’s airport and seized control of all access points, meaning they they can decide who stays and who leaves the Middle Eastern state as the Taliban plunge Afghanistan back into what locals and many Western governments fear will be Islamic tyranny. 

-Royal Marine commando Paul ‘Pen’ Farthing described how his wife and pregnant employee, from whom he has been separated, had been ‘crushed, groped and pushed’ by crowds outside the airport – and had been denied entry by British and US troops stationed there.

The race to get out of Kabul: What is the situation quanto a Afghanistan and how many people are being evacuated?

The Taliban have seized power quanto a Afghanistan two weeks before the US was set to complete its troop withdrawal after a costly 20-year war. Here is the latest:

  • The Taliban, who ran Afghanistan quanto a the late 1990s, have again taken control after the Western-backed government that has run it for 20 years collapsed
  • The Taliban’s deputy big and co-founder Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar arrived quanto a Kandahar Tuesday after 20 years of exile, landing quanto a the insurgent group’s former capital just days after they took control of the country. 
  • It comes as the Taliban held a press conference quanto a which it insisted it would respect women’s rights – but women’s rights but ‘within Islamic law’
  • They insisted would not exact revenge, which the group insisted they ‘want to dal vivo peacefully’ after taking control of Afghanistan
  • Thousands of people are racing to Kabul Airport which is one of the last routes out of the country amid fears the Taliban could carry out revenge attacks
  • Tens of thousands of people need evacuating – including some 22,000 acceso US special immigrant visas, 6,000-7,000 British nationals and Afghan allies, and 10,000 refugees that Germany has said it will accept 
  • Some people are so desperate that they clung to the side of a military aereo as it took non attivato and then plunged to their deaths yesterday – at least seven died 
  • At least 12 military flights took non attivato from Kabul yesterday  
  • RAF planes are taking people to other stable parts of the Middle East where they can get charter flights back to the UK 
  • Eleven aircraft of five different types are believed to be shuttling quanto a and out of Kabul – the RAF Voyager Tanker (Airbus A330 MRTT), Boeing C-17 Globemaster III, Lockheed C-130 Hercules and Airbus A400M Atlas 
  • 900 British armed forces are quanto a Afghanistan to bring UK nationals home and secure safety of some Afghans
  • 370 UK embassy gruppo and British nationals were flown out by the MoD acceso Sunday and yesterday, while 289 Afghan nationals were taken out last week
  • A further 350 British and Afghans will be taken out of the country quanto a the next 24 hours, UK Government says 
  • The US may issue up 80,000 special immigrant visas to those who helped with its combat operations
  • 7,500 troops currently guarding the airport – including 6,000 Americans and smaller numbers of British, Turkish and Australians – will also need to leave  
  • Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called for G7 leaders to hold a virtual congresso ‘quanto a the coming days’ 
  • Defence Minister Ben Wallace says the Taliban takeover is a ‘failure of the international community’
  • Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab says UK must work with ‘challenging’ partners acceso dealing with Taliban
  • US President Joe Biden called the situation ‘gut-wrenching’ but rejected blame for what’s
  • The Taliban now say they want to form an ‘inclusive, Islamic government’ with other factions – and are negotiations with senior politicians
  • Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has already fled the country after the Taliban reached Kabul acceso Sunday

A causa di videos posted to Facebook, Farthing said they are now quanto a a secure British location, but furiously urged Boris Johnson to ‘get his s**t together’ and slammed ‘snake’ Biden’s ‘absolutely disgusting’ withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan following the 20-year Western intervention. 

He also took fire at the British troops who allegedly prevented his wife from entering Kabul airport, adding: ‘They should not be wearing the beret of Her Majesty’s British forces if they’magnate not prepared to aperto that gate for a pregnant woman.’

One female student also described how she feared she would be crushed to death by panicking crowds at Kabul airport. Speaking to MailOnline, Aisha Ahmad – who studies quanto a the capital – said: ‘People had heard that the Americans were letting people onto the aircraft to get them out of the country.

‘I didn’t believe it at first, but then I went to the airport and saw that people had been allowed onto the tarmac without any checks, so I thought maybe it was true.

‘There were thousands of people inside the airport. Then at one point we were all pushed back by the Taliban police to get us out of the airport and women and children were trampled under people’s feet.

‘I couldn’t breathe quanto a the crush and I really thought I was going to giorno. My feet are all swollen and covered quanto a bruises. We thought there was a flight going to Germany which we might get acceso, but quanto a the end they only took German nationals acceso board.’

She added: ‘From what I can see quanto a the mass-media, the situation inside the perimeter has calmed a bit, but that has just transferred the problem outside onto the streets. People are so desperate.’

Aisha has received ‘serious threats’ from Islamists after changing her Twitter profile image to one of ex-law student Breshna Musazai, who was shot twice by the Taliban quanto a 2016 but survived the assassination attempt and who works with an NGO to help girls receive an education. 

She also that Kabul was like a ‘ghost town’ since the Taliban had arrived and most shops were closed as traders worried about the worsening security situation and the possibility of looters.

‘People are very conflicted about the future and what kind of Taliban we are facing now. Some think they’ve changed, and others are not so sure. I personally believe they will be softer for a few months, and then after that they will be the same Taliban of old,’ Aisha said.

‘We’magnate also uncertain about how women will be treated. A causa di some provinces they’ve told women not to poiché to work, but we don’t know if that’s temporary. Whether they will start punishing men for shaving their beard and women for not wearing the hijab, no-one really knows.

‘I have lost all hope and I don’t think it will be an easy path for Afghan women. My mother used to tell me stories about what the Taliban did and now I fear it will all poiché true like a bad dream.’

Farthing said acceso Facebook: ‘If I hear acceso the radio ora the TV one more time that the airport is secure, its not – absolutely not. And for them to try to be evacuated and have to be groped, pushed and crushed to get to the gate and then refused by the British soldiers and the American soldiers acceso the other side to aperto it – all those soldiers need to grow a pair.

‘Boris Johnson, you get your s**t together. I am absolutely furious. They are now out acceso the streets of Kabul at night trying to get back here. This is a complete cluster. This is the biggest cluster, and if they get injured ora hurt, I am you 1000 per certo cent responsible. 

‘We will not be leaving, if they get here safely, we will not be leaving here again until that airport is secured and you can get into it. Don’t you assegnare send another expat ora any of these innocent Afghans to that airport to try to get them quanto a through the thousands, the thousands of desperate people that are trying to get quanto a there.

‘You have not got a grip acceso this, your military does not have a grip of this. 

‘Boris Johnson and his government and the Americans, and that absolute snake Joe Biden, you are responsible for this, absolutely responsible. Saying you have mai regrets about withdrawal? You have totally f**ked this up.’  

Mr Johnson hopes to convene a congresso of G7 world leaders at the ‘earliest opportunity’ as he looks to co-ordinate the international response, as Mr Raab said the UK would have to work with ‘challenging’ partners acceso how to deal with the Taliban. 

‘We will honour women’s rights (within Islamic law)’: Taliban spokesman holds first news conference quanto a Kabul and promises they won’t persecute women ora take revenge against anyone – as deputy big returns after 20 years quanto a exile  

The Taliban claimed that Afghan women will not be persecuted under their Islamic rule during their first press conference since their sweeping conquest of Kabul this week, as the man tipped to be Afghanistan’s next big arrived quanto a the country after a 20-year exile.

Zabihullah Mujahid, a spokesman, claimed ‘there is a huge difference between us and the Taliban of 20 years ’, when female Afghans were beaten quanto a the street ora publicly executed, denied work, healthcare and an education, and barred from leaving home without a malamente chaperone. 

During their press conference quanto a the capital city, the Taliban insisted girls will receive an education and women will be allowed to study at university – both of which were forbidden under Taliban rule quanto a Afghanistan between 1996 and 2001 before the US-led invasion. 

The terror group also claimed they want women to be part of the new government after female Afghans staged a protest outside a local Taliban HQ quanto a Khair Khana district, a suburb of north-west Kabul, while chanting ‘honour and lives are safe’ and ‘join voices with us’. 

However, women and girls remain the most at risk under the new dieta, with gangs quanto a conquered areas allegedly hunting children as young as 12 and unmarried ora widowed women they regard as spoils of war – ‘qhanimat’ – being forced into marriage ora sex slavery. 

The Taliban has also said women will have to wear hijabs but not burkas. During the press conference acceso Tuesday, Mujahid did not detail what restrictions would be imposed acceso women, although he did say it would be a government with ‘strong Islamic values’.  

Mujahid claimed: ‘We are committed to the rights of women under the system of Sharia. They are going to be working shoulder to shoulder with us. We would like to assure the international community that there will be mai discrimination.’

The Taliban denied it was enforcing sex slavery, and claims that such actions are against Islam. During the 1990s, the dieta established religious police for the suppression of ‘vice’, and courts handed out extreme punishments including stoning to death women accused of adultery.   

Just minutes before the hour-long press conference, it was confirmed that Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban’s deputy big and co-founder, had arrived back quanto a Kandahar from Qatar, with what was described as a high-level delegation.

‘We are going to decide what kind of laws will be presented to the nation. This will be the responsibility of the government with the participation of all people,’ Mujahid claimed.

Pictured: Zabihullah Mujahid, chief spokesman for the Taliban, speaks during a press conference in Kabul on Tuesday, August 17, 2021. For years, Mujahid had been a shadowy figure issuing statements on behalf of the militants

Pictured: Zabihullah Mujahid, chief spokesman for the Taliban, speaks during a press conference quanto a Kabul acceso Tuesday, August 17, 2021. For years, Mujahid had been a shadowy figure issuing statements acceso behalf of the militants

The same group of women started protesting this morning, demanding the extremist group does not 'eliminate' women from society but were not approached by Taliban fighters until the afternoon

The same group of women started protesting this morning, demanding the extremist group does not ‘eliminate’ women from society but were not approached by Taliban fighters until the afternoon

Pictured: Taliban fighters on a pick-up truck move around a market area, flocked with local Afghan people at the Kote Sangi area of Kabul on August 17, 2021, after Taliban seized control of the capital following the collapse of the Afghan government

Pictured: Taliban fighters acceso a pick-up truck move around a market schieramento, flocked with local Afghan people at the Kote Sangi schieramento of Kabul acceso August 17, 2021, after Taliban seized control of the capital following the collapse of the Afghan government

Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid answers press members questions as he holds a press conference in Kabul, Afghanistan

Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid answers press members questions as he holds a press conference quanto a Kabul, Afghanistan

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, shakes hand with a journalist after his first news conference, in Kabul, Afghanistan

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, shakes hand with a journalist after his first news conference, quanto a Kabul, Afghanistan

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban's co-founder and deputy leader, has arrived back in the country from Qatar, a spokesman has said (file image)

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban’s co-founder and deputy big, has arrived back quanto a the country from Qatar, a spokesman has said (file image)

The Taliban’s war acceso female Afghans: Islamic group’s brutal oppression of women and girls during 1990s tyranny

A woman wearing a blue-coloured burqa walks next to the construction site of a building in Kabul on June 21, 2021

A woman wearing a blue-coloured burqa walks next to the construction site of a building quanto a Kabul acceso June 21, 2021 

Under the hardline version of Sharia – Islamic law – that the Taliban imposed the last time they controlled the capital, women and girls were mostly denied education ora employment. 

Burqas – full and coverings – became mandatory quanto a public, women could not leave home without a malamente companion, and public floggings and executions, including stoning for adultery, were carried out quanto a city squares and stadiums.

Under threat of execution, girls were banned from mainstream education after the age of eight – forcing those who wanted to learn to do so quanto a secret schools. 

From the age of eight, girls were not allowed to be quanto a direct contact with males other than a close ‘blood relative’, husband, ora in-law.

Punishments were often carried out publicly, either as formal spectacles held quanto a sports stadiums ora town squares ora spontaneous street beatings. Many punishments were meted out by individual militias without the sanction of Taliban authorities. 

A causa di October 1996, for instance, a woman had the tip of her thumb cut non attivato for wearing nail varnish – while quanto a 1999, a mother-of-seven was executed quanto a front of 30,000 spectators quanto a Kabul’s Ghazi stadium for murdering her husband. She had been jailed for three years and tortured prior to the execution, but had refused to plead her innocence quanto a a bid to protect her daughter.

 Even after the Taliban’s ousting quanto a 2001, women often remained marginalised, especially quanto a rural areas.

The United Nations chief called for an immediate end to violence quanto a Afghanistan and urging the international community to unite to ensure that the human rights of all people are respected.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres appealed to the Security Council at an emergency congresso acceso Monday ‘and the international community as a whole to stand together, work together and act together.’

He said he is ‘particularly concerned by accounts of mounting human rights violations against the women and girls of Afghanistan who fear a return to the darkest days’ quanto a the 1990s when the Taliban ruled and barred girls for getting an education and imposed draconian measures acceso women.

Mr Guterres said ‘the world is following events quanto a Afghanistan with a heavy heart and deep disquiet about what lies ahead’ and with the country’s future and the hopes and dreams of a generation of young Afghans quanto a the balance, the coming days ‘will be pivotal.’

At this ‘molesto hour,’ the secretary-general urged all parties, especially the Taliban, ‘to exercise utmost restraint to protect lives and to ensure that humanitarian needs can be met.’

Mr Guterres said the UN continues to have gruppo and offices quanto a areas now under Taliban control, and which so far have been respected. ‘Above all, we will stay and deliver quanto a support of the Afghan people quanto a their hour of need.’

‘We cannot and must not abandon the people of Afghanistan,’ he said.

Much of the rest of Mujahid’s press conference was also aimed at quashing fears about reprisal attacks against those who supported the Western-backed government, saying the new government did not want internal ora external enemies.

Earlier, Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen told Sky News ‘thousands’ of schools would continue to educate girls as the group announced a ‘general amnesty’ for those who previously worked quanto a the Afghan government, saying ‘their properties will be saved and their honour and their lives are safe.’

A group of women staged a demonstration demanding the right to work and study quanto a Kabul acceso Tuesday morning. 

Chanting the slogan: ‘join voices with us’ the small group of women approached a local Taliban HQ quanto a Khair Khana district, a suburb of north-west Kabul.

But rather than arresting ora beating the protestors, the senior Taliban commander present tried to reassure them by telling them: ‘Don’t worry, your rights will be respected. You will be allowed to work and study.’   

One observer who saw the women’s protest said: ‘The Taliban are acceso their best behaviour at the moment. They are keen to take control of the levers of government quanto a Kabul with the least possible bloodshed and quanto a the quickest time.

‘They know that to do that they need to win the hearts and minds of the people, ora at least allay their fears. 

‘We’ve all heard orders from their high command stating that women will be allowed to work and girls to go to school, but that’s very different from the way the Taliban have behaved quanto a the past. The proof will be whether they continue to maintain that position over the next few weeks and months, ora revert to their old ways.’

Meanwhile, MailOnline received a heartfelt televisione plea from a young Afghan student outlining her fears for the days ahead.

Kabul University student Rukhsar, 22, said; ‘I am disheartened by the recent situation and advance of the Taliban because I have been sitting at home and worrying about my future.

‘I have dreamed of doing a lot of things quanto a my life but now everything has been stopped suddenly. ‘Everything has changed quanto a a flash of light.’  

She added: ‘I don’t know about my future now and the international community have turned their faces away from us. This is our right to go to university and to do work quanto a the offices.’

Mujahid also confirmed the Taliban’s intention to form a government, and made assurances that its shape will be announced once it has been completed.

‘Afghanistan will have a strong Islamic government,’ he said. ‘What the name and makeup will be, let’s leave that to political leaders. I can assure you it will have strong Islamic values.’

When asked by a whether the Taliban would renounce terrorist group Al-Qaeda, Mujahid answered evasively, saying the group would not permit foreign fighters to use Afghanistan ‘against anybody’.

‘I would like to assure the international community that nobody will be harmed,’ Mujahid said from the former government’s mass-media information centre quanto a Kabul, speaking into a row of microphones.

‘We do not want to have any problems with the international community,’ he added, before defending the Taliban’s right to ‘act according to our religious principles.’

‘Other countries have different approaches, rules and regulations… the Afghans have the right to have their own rules and regulations quanto a accordance with our values.’

The spokesman suggested that the Taliban intended to put the last 20 years behind them, claiming that the group is ‘not going to revenge anybody, we do not have grudges against anybody’. 

‘We want to make sure Afghanistan is not the battlefield of conflict anymore. We want to grant amnesty to those who have fought against us,’ he said.

He described the Taliban’s ’20 year struggle for freedom, emancipating the country form occupation,’ and said of the recent incursion: ‘This was our right, we have achieved our right, I would like to thank God for bringing us to this stage.’

There have also been concerns that the Taliban would restrict mass-media and journalists within the country. Mujahid also attempted to allay those fears quanto a Tuesdays conference.

‘I would like to assure the mass-media that we are committed to the mass-media within our cultural frameworks’, Mujahid said. ‘Private mass-media can continue to be free and independent.

‘Islam is very important quanto a our country… Therefore Islamic values should be taken into account when it comes to the mass-media, to developing your programmes.

‘Impartiality of the mass-media is very important, they can critique our work so that we can improve. But the mass-media should not work against us’, he added. 

Press members are seen as Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid holds a press conference in Kabul

Press members are seen as Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid holds a press conference quanto a Kabul

Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid (L) gestures as he arrives to hold the first press conference in Kabul

Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid (L) gestures as he arrives to hold the first press conference quanto a Kabul

Kabul University student Rukhsar, 22, made a heartfelt plea outlining her fears for the days ahead

Rukhsar said she was 'disheartened by the recent situation' and 'worrying' about her future

MailOnline received a heartfelt televisione plea from Kabul University student Rukhsar, 22, outlining her fears for the days ahead. She said; ‘I am disheartened by the recent situation and advance of the Taliban because I have been sitting at home and worrying about my future’

‘If I hear once more that the airport is safe – it’s not’: Westerners trying to flee Kabul tell of being groped and crushed while trying to navigate impassable melee of locals at Taliban checkpoints outside only airstrip providing flights to safety 

Western nationals trying to flee Kabul have described being crushed and groped during a stampede of Afghans held at Taliban checkpoints outside the airstrip providing evacuation flights as Afghanistan is taken over by the Islamist terror group. 

Armed militants have surrounded the capital’s airport and seized control of all access points, meaning they they can decide who stays and who leaves the Middle Eastern state as the Taliban plunge Afghanistan back into what locals and many Western governments fear will be Islamic tyranny. 

-Royal Marine commando Paul ‘Pen’ Farthing described how his wife and pregnant employee, from whom he has been separated, had been ‘crushed, groped and pushed’ by crowds outside the airport – and had been denied entry by British and US troops stationed there.

A causa di videos posted to Facebook, Farthing said they are now quanto a a secure British location, but furiously urged Boris Johnson to ‘get his s**t together’ and slammed ‘snake’ Joe Biden’s ‘absolutely disgusting’ withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan following the 20-year Western intervention. 

He also took fire at the British troops who allegedly prevented his wife from entering Kabul airport, adding: ‘They should not be wearing the beret of Her Majesty’s British forces if they’magnate not prepared to aperto that gate for a pregnant woman.’

One female student also described how she feared she would be crushed to death by panicking crowds at Kabul airport. Speaking to MailOnline, Aisha Ahmad – who studies quanto a the capital – said: ‘People had heard that the Americans were letting people onto the aircraft to get them out of the country.

‘I didn’t believe it at first, but then I went to the airport and saw that people had been allowed onto the tarmac without any checks, so I thought maybe it was true.

‘There were thousands of people inside the airport. Then at one point we were all pushed back by the Taliban police to get us out of the airport and women and children were trampled under people’s feet.

‘I couldn’t breathe quanto a the crush and I really thought I was going to giorno. My feet are all swollen and covered quanto a bruises. We thought there was a flight going to Germany which we might get acceso, but quanto a the end they only took German nationals acceso board.’  

Mujahid put particular emphasis acceso people being safe under the new Taliban dieta, and that thing would be different from over two decades .

‘A causa di your homes, nobody is going to harm you, nobody is going to be interrogated ora chased, those who have knocked acceso doors to inspect houses are abusers, they are going to be pursued and investigated,’ he said. 

‘Thousands of soldiers who fought us for 20 years, after the end of occupation, they have been pardoned. Those who are at the airport waiting, when they poiché back to their homes, they will be safe… we want to give them confidence.’

The Taliban’s spokesman said that the group has pardoned everybody for the stability and peace of Afghanistan,’ and said any harm caused quanto a the recent incursion was ‘one of the side effects of conflict’.

‘A huge occupying force was defeated, it was impossible for us to emancipate the country, without injuries, without harms, without hurts.

‘Animosities have poiché to an end, we want to dal vivo peacefully, we don’t want any internal enemies ora external enemies.’

Mujahid said that the country was at a ‘historic stage’, with consultation over the creation of the new ‘inclusive’ government to be completed soon. He also said that while there had been some riots involving people who ‘wanted to abuse the situation,’ he assured Kabul’s residents they would be protected.

He also signalled the Taliban might invite countries to return to their embassies after frantic efforts were made quanto a the last few days by many western countries to embassy evacuate gruppo from the city.

‘The security of embassies is crucially important to us. The areas where there are embassies will have complete security,’ he said.

Despite the obvious PR campaign, terrified families quanto a Kabul yesterday handed red and white roses to the Taliban fighters who have taken their city – as they desperately tried to build bridges with them.

Footage of the men and boys approaching the armed members showed them handing the symbolic coloured flowers.

A causa di Afghani culture red roses symbolise friendship, while the white blooms mean forgiveness.

Ironically the flowers were nearly wiped out during the last Taliban dieta when gardens were left neglected.

The handing of the roses was a last gamble of families quanto a Kabul who are anxiously waiting to see how rule under the Islamists will .

With little else to urge compassion from them, mothers and fathers are hoping the gesture will encourage mercy.

The peaceful act is quanto a stark contrast to the actions of Taliban fighters marauding the capital city.

They have been targeting pro-West men and women and knocking acceso doors to take them away.

Baradar, reported to have been one of Mullah Omar’s most trusted commanders, was captured quanto a 2010 by security forces quanto a the southern Pakistani city of Karachi and released quanto a 2018. 

Just nine months , Baradar posed for pictures with Donald Trump’s Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to sign a peace deal quanto a Doha which yesterday lay quanto a tatters.

Acceso Sunday, his forces seized Kabul and he is now tipped to become Afghanistan’s next big quanto a a reversal of fortune which humiliates Washington. 

While Haibatullah Akhundzada is the Taliban’s overall big, Baradar is head of its political office and one of the most recognisable faces of the chiefs who have been involved quanto a peace talks quanto a Qatar. 

The 53-year-old was deputy big under ex-chief Mullah Mohammed Omar, whose support for Al-Qaeda big Osama bin Laden led to the US-led invasion of Afghanistan after 9/11.   

The Taliban’s former chief Mullah Mohammed Omar founded of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan quanto a 1996 with Baradar. Omar’s death was announced quanto a 2015 – two years after he succumbed to TB. 

Mullah Omar bestowed the title ‘brother’ upon Baradar as a sign of affection.

His arrival comes as the Taliban went acceso a PR offensive Tuesday, promising women and girls their ‘honour and lives are safe’ and they will be able to work and go to university as brave protesters demanding equality faced an armed militant quanto a Kabul. 

The Taliban gave the first indication acceso Tuesday since coming to power that they would not make the full burqa compulsory for women as they did when they last ruled Afghanistan.

Under the militants’ hardline 1996 – 2001 rule, girls’ schools were closed, women were prevented from travelling and working, and women were forced to wear an all-covering burqa quanto a public.

‘The burqa is not the only hijab (headscarf) that (can) be observed, there is different types of hijab not limited to burqa,’ Suhail Shaheen, spokesman for the group’s political office quanto a Doha, told Britain’s Sky News.

Taliban fighters patrol along a street in Kabul on August 17, 2021, as the Taliban moved to quickly restart the Afghan capital following their stunning takeover

Taliban fighters patrol along a street quanto a Kabul acceso August 17, 2021, as the Taliban moved to quickly restart the Afghan capital following their stunning takeover

The fighter accepted the rose

He appeared to be unsure of what to do with it

A causa di Afghani culture the colours of the roses can signify different things, including friendship

Pictured: Taliban fighters patrol in Kandahar, Afghanistan, 17 August 2021. Taliban co-founder Abdul Ghani Baradar, on 16 August, declared victory and an end to the decades-long

Pictured: Taliban fighters patrol quanto a Kandahar, Afghanistan, 17 August 2021. Taliban co-founder Abdul Ghani Baradar, acceso 16 August, declared victory and an end to the decades-long

The burqa is a one-piece overgarment that covers the entire head and , with a mesh panel to see through.

Shaheen did not specify other types of hijab that would be deemed acceptable by the Taliban.

Alongside concerns centring acceso clothing, numerous countries and rights groups have raised the alarm for the fate of women’s education quanto a Afghanistan now that it is quanto a the hands of the hardline militants who entered the capital Kabul acceso Sunday.

But Shaheen also sought to provide reassurance acceso this topic.

Women ‘can get education from primary to higher education – that means university. We have announced this policy at international conferences, the Moscow conference and here at the Doha conference (acceso Afghanistan),’ Shaheen said.

Thousands of schools quanto a areas captured by the Taliban were still operational, he added.

Under the last Taliban dieta, which ruled quanto a accordance with a harsh interpretation of Islamic law, women were largely confined to their homes. The insurgents have sought to project greater moderation quanto a recent years, but many Afghans remain skeptical.

Their skepticism appears founded as some chilling reports have emerged of Islamist militants stalking cities across Afghanistan for women and girls.

Jihadist commanders are reportedly ordering imams quanto a areas they have captured to bring them lists of unmarried women aged from 12 to 45 for their soldiers to marry because they view them as ‘qhanimat’ ora ‘spoils of war’ – to be divided up among the victors.

The warlords are also trying to track Afghans who co-operated with Allied forces after the invasion and toppling of the Taliban dieta following the September 11, 2001 attacks, with one televisione showing a militant shooting at a man acceso a wall at Hamid Karzai International Airport.

However, female Afghans are feared to be some of the most at-risk people under the new Taliban government. When the Islamists came to power quanto a 1996 after the country’s terrifying Civil War, they imposed theocracy and brutalised and oppressed women and girls.

Afghans pouring into Kabul as refugees fleeing the march of the militants had told stories of how Taliban warlords had demanded they turn over women and girls to become their ‘wives’ and be raped. The Wall Street Journal also reported that civilians and captured soldiers were murdered by the Islamist terror organisation – allegations that Taliban officials have denied.

There have been reports of women-centric shops with notices pasted acceso them warning them not to enter ora they would ‘ the consequences’. Taliban fighters reportedly shot dead a woman wearing ‘tight clothes’ and quanto a some areas women cannot leave home without a malamente chaperone.

Other reports say women are being forced to wear coverings and Burqas, while Al-Jazeera reported acceso Monday that the extremist group told female employees at some banks to not return to their jobs.

Earlier quanto a the week, a beauty salon owner was pictured painting over pictures of female models acceso the outside of his shop, and a televisione of a young girl crying about the loss of her future went viral, reaching over 1.6 million people. 

The blood-soaked Taliban leaders taking control of Afghanistan whose histories of jihad jar with their claims of a new more tolerant dieta and ‘peace for all’

The Taliban may be trying to convince the world this will be a far more tolerant dieta than last seen quanto a 2001, but the leaders who will take over Afghanistan remain a group of veteran jihadists with a blood-stained history.

Many founders of the original Taliban are still quanto a guida positions today as the militants take control of Afghanistan, while others are the sons of founders who have since died ora were killed quanto a action.

After the deaths of former chief Mohammed Omar and his successor Akhtar Mohammad Mansour quanto a less than 12 months, the guida is held by Haibatullah Akhundzada. Dubbed ‘Dirigente of the Faithful’, the Taliban’s Supreme Commander who has the final word acceso its political, religious and military policy.

Despite being the now-obvious choice, there is speculation that Akhundzada may not become the front-facing big of the new Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan – the full name of Afghanistan under the new Taliban rule.

Under Akhundzada sits three deputies. A causa di addition to Mullah Yaqoob, there is Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar and Sirajuddin Haqqani, with the three being described be one Western official as ‘the just-about-OK, the bad and the very, very ugly’.

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar – who arrived back quanto a Afghanistan today after 20 years quanto a exile – is perhaps the most well-known and senior. He was the co-founder of the Taliban along-side Mullah Omar – who bestowed the title ‘brother’ upon him as a sign of affection. Some have suggested he may take up a prime-ministerial role under the new dieta. 

Sirajuddin Haqqani heads up his late-father’s group – the Haqqani – a US-designated terror cell responsible for a number of brutal killing throughout Afghanistan, including a bombing that killed seven children.

After a meteoric rise to power following his father’s death, Mullah Yaqoob heads up the Taliban’s military, and was likely responsible for the recent incursion that has seen Afghanistan fall under the group’s control once more.

A causa di addition to the deputy leaders, there are other senior figures among the Taliban who were key quanto a negotiations with the Afghan government and foreign countries as they tried to find a way back into power.

Now, after assuming control of the country, it is not immediately clear what the guida structure will like. Below, we at the senior Taliban figures likely to be vying for power quanto a the weeks and months to poiché.

SUPREME COMMANDER HAIBATULLAH AKHUNDZADA  

Akhundzada became head of the Taliban's council of religious scholars after the US invasion and is believed to be the author of many of its fatwas (Islamic legal rulings)

Akhundzada became head of the Taliban’s council of religious scholars after the US invasion and is believed to be the author of many of its fatwas (Islamic legal rulings)

  • Age: 60 years old
  • Rank: Supreme Commander
  • Joined: 1994 
  • Future Emir of Afghanistan and ‘Dirigente of the Faithful’, the Taliban’s Islamic figurehead
  • Became big quanto a 2016 ahead of other senior figures after predecessor was killed quanto a a U.S. drone strike 

Haibatullah Akhundzada, the ‘Dirigente of the Faithful,’ is the Taliban’s Supreme Commander with the final word acceso its political, religious and military policy.

Akhundzada is expected to take the title of Emir of Afghanistan under the new Taliban dieta.

Believed to be around 60 years old, he is not known for his military strategy but is revered as an Islamic scholar and rules the Taliban by that right. 

He took over quanto a 2016 when the group’s former chief, Akhtar Mansour, was killed quanto a a US drone strike acceso the Pakistani border.

After being appointed as a surprise big, Akhundzada secured a pledge of loyalty from Al Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri, who showered the religious scholar with praise – calling him ‘the emir of the faithful’.

This helped to seal his jihadi credentials with the group’s long-time allies, after securing the title quanto a favour of other more senior figures.

Akhundzada was tasked with the enormous challenge of unifying a militant movement that briefly fractured during a bitter power struggle following the assassination of his predecessor, and the revelation that the guida had hid the death of Taliban founder Mullah Omar for years.

The big’s public profile has been largely limited to the release of annual messages during Islamic holidays.  

Akhundzada was born around 1959 to a religious scholar quanto a the Panjwayi district of Kandahar Province. His family were forced to flee their home during the Soviet invasion and he joined the resistance as a young man.

He was one of the first new Taliban recruits quanto a the 1990s and immediately impressed his superiors with his knowledge of Islamic law.

When the Taliban captured Afghanistan’s western Farah province, he was put quanto a charge of fighting crime quanto a the schieramento. As the Taliban seized more of the country, Akhunzad became head of the military court and deputy chief of its supreme court. 

After the US invasion quanto a 2001 he became head of the Taliban’s council of religious scholars and is believed to be the author of many of its fatwas (Islamic legal rulings), including public executions of murderer and adulterers and cutting the hands non attivato thieves. 

Two attempts have been made to assassinate Akhundzada, one quanto a 2012 and another quanto a 2019. Afghan intelligence agency took responsibility for the first, while the second – which killed a number of Akhundzada’s family including his father and brother – was claimed by the High Council of Afghanistan Islamic Emirate.

Before being named the new big he had been preaching and teaching for around 15 years at a mosque quanto a Kuchlak, a town quanto a southwestern Pakistan, sources told Reuters. 

MULLAH ABDUL GHANI BARADAR

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, one of the co-founders of the Taliban and its deputy-leader, pictured on August 16 after the fall of Kabul, Afghanistan

Pictured: Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, co-founder and deputy big of the Taliban, makes a televisione statement acceso August 16 following the fall of Kabul

  • Age: 53 years old
  • Rank: Co-founder, head of political office
  • Joined: 1994
  • Held for eight years quanto a Pakistani prison before being released acceso orders from the US government 

Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, one of the co-founders of the Taliban, was freed from jail quanto a Pakistan three years at the request of the U.S. government.  

Just nine months , he posed for pictures with Donald Trump’s Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to sign a peace deal quanto a Doha which today lies quanto a tatters.

Acceso Sunday, his forces seized Kabul and he is now tipped to become Afghanistan’s next big quanto a a reversal of fortune which humiliates Washington.

While Haibatullah Akhundzada is the Taliban’s overall big, Baradar is head of its political office and one of the most recognisable faces of the chiefs who have been involved quanto a peace talks quanto a Qatar.

His name Baradar means ‘brother’, a title which was conferred by Taliban founder Mullah Omar himself as a mark of affection.

The 53-year-old was deputy big under ex-chief Mullah Mohammed Omar, whose support for Al-Qaeda big Osama bin Laden led to the US-led invasion of Afghanistan after 9/11. 

Baradar arrived quanto a Kandahar Province acceso Tuesday, landing quanto a the insurgent group’s former capital just days after they took control of the country.

A Taliban spokesman said acceso Twitter that Baradar and a high level delegation ‘reached their beloved country quanto a the afternoon’ from Qatar. 

Born quanto a Uruzgan province quanto a 1968, Baradar was raised quanto a Kandahar, the birthplace of the Taliban movement. He fought with the mujahideen against the Soviets quanto a the 1980s until they were driven out quanto a 1989.

Afterwards, Afghanistan was gripped by a blood civil war between rival warlords and Baradar set up an Islamic school quanto a Kandahar with his former commander Mohammed Omar.

The two mullahs helped to found the Taliban movement, an ideology which embraced hardline orthodoxy and strived for the creation of an Islamic Emirate. 

Fuelled by zealotry, hatred of greedy warlords and with financial backing from Pakistan’s secret services, the Taliban seized power quanto a 1996 after conquering provincial capitals before marching acceso Kabul, just as they have quanto a recent months.

Baradar had a number of different roles during the Taliban’s five-year reign and was the deputy defence minister when the US invaded quanto a 2001.  

He went into hiding but remained active quanto a the Taliban’s guida quanto a exile.

In September 2020, Baradar was pictured with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who 'urged the Taliban to seize this opportunity to forge a political settlement and reach a comprehensive and permanent ceasefire,' the US said in a statement

A causa di September 2020, Baradar was pictured with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who ‘urged the Taliban to seize this opportunity to forge a political settlement and reach a comprehensive and permanent ceasefire,’ the US said quanto a a statement

A causa di 2010, the CIA tracked him to the Pakistani city of Karachi and quanto a February of that year the Pakistani intelligence service (ISI) arrested him.

But quanto a 2018, he was released at the request of the Trump administration as part of their ongoing negotiations with the Taliban quanto a Qatar, acceso the understanding that he could help broker peace. 

A causa di February 2020, Baradar signed the Doha Agreement quanto a which the U.S. pledged to leave Afghanistan acceso the basis that the Taliban would enter into a power-sharing arrangement with President Ashraf Ghani’s government quanto a Kabul.

He was pictured quanto a September with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who ‘urged the Taliban to seize this opportunity to forge a political settlement and reach a comprehensive and permanent ceasefire,’ the US said quanto a a statement.

Pompeo ‘welcomed Afghan guida and ownership of the effort to end 40 years of war and ensure that Afghanistan is not a threat to the United States ora its allies.’

The Doha deal was heralded as a momentous peace declaration but has been proved to be nothing but a ploy by the Taliban.

The jihadists waited until thousands of American troops had left before launching a major offensive to recapture the country, undoing two decades of work by the US-led coalition.

SIRAJUDDIN HAQQANI

Sirajuddin Haqqani

Sirajuddin Haqqani

  • Age: Mid-forties
  • Joined: 2000s
  • Rank: Deputy big
  • Son of famed commander from the anti-Soviet jihad – 
  • Head of Haqqani terror group that has admitted to plotting a number of attacks, including a suicide bombing that killed seven schoolchildren  

Sirajuddin doubles as both the deputy big of the Taliban movement while also heading the powerful Haqqani rete televisiva privata.

The Haqqani is a US-designated terror group that has long been viewed as one of the most dangerous factions fighting Afghan and US-led NATO forces quanto a Afghanistan during the past two decades.

His father, Jalaluddin Haqqani, was the founder of the powerful force of fighters spanning the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, who are seen as a Pakistan-based Taliban.

The group is infamous for its use of suicide bombers and is believed to have orchestrated some of the most high-profile attacks quanto a Kabul over the years.

Haqqani himself admitted to planning a 2008 attack acceso the Serena Albergo quanto a Kabul that killed six people. The victims included American citizen Thor David Hesla.

An FBI wanted poster for Sirajuddin Haqqani, the son of the famed commander from the anti-Soviet jihad

An FBI wanted for Sirajuddin Haqqani, the son of the famed commander from the anti-Soviet jihad

He also confessed that he directed the planning by his rete televisiva privata of an assassination attempt acceso former president of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai quanto a April 2008. 

Later that same year, he was accused by coalition forces of carrying out a December bombing at an Afghan barracks near an elementary school that killed several school children, an Afghan soldier and an Afghan guard. 

A causa di November 2008, it was reported by the New York Times that David S. Rohde was kidnapped quanto a the country, and Haqqani is reported to have been the journalist’s last captor before he escaped.

The rete televisiva privata has also been accused of assassinating cima Afghan officials and kidnapped Western citizens for ransom – including US soldier Bowe Bergdahl, released quanto a 2014. 

Known for their independence, fighting acumen, and savvy business dealings, the Haqqanis are believed to oversee operations quanto a the rugged mountains of eastern Afghanistan, while considerable sway over the Taliban’s guida council.

Haqqani himself was the target of a reported U.S. drone strike quanto a 2010, but he was not present quanto a the schieramento that was targeted. 

MULLAH YAQOOB

Mullah Yaqoob

Mullah Yaqoob

  • Age: 31 years old
  • Joined: Unknown
  • Rank: Second deputy, Taliban military chief
  • The son of the Taliban’s original founder Mullah Mohammed Omar who died quanto a 2013 of Tuberculosis 

The son of the Taliban’s founder Mullah Omar, Mullah Yaqoob heads the group’s powerful military commission, which oversees a vast rete televisiva privata of field commanders charged with executing the insurgency’s strategic operations quanto a the war. He is seen as being part of the Taliban’s more moderate camp, along with Baradar.

Believed to be quanto a his 30s, his lineage and ties to his father – who enjoyed a cult-like status as the Taliban’s big before his death – serves as a potent symbol and makes him a unifying figure over the sprawling movement.

However, speculation remains rife about Yaqoob’s exact role within the movement, with some analysts arguing that his appointment to the role quanto a 2020 was merely cosmetic.

He was virtually unknown until five years , when the mysterious death of his father was announce two years after he died of Tuberculosis. A causa di his first ever public address at the time, Yacoob – who is presumed to have been quanto a his twenties at the time – called for unity within the Sunni extremist group.

Since his audio message spread through the ranks of the Taliban, he is understood to have risen the ranks quickly within the group, and has consolidated power since his failed bid to succeed his father. He first became deputy big before – more recently – becoming military chief. 

Outsiders believed that Yaqoob was a supporter of the peace process between the Taliban and the Afghan government, that resulted quanto a the deal being signed by the Taliban and the United States under Donald Trump, aimed at withdrawing foreign troops from the country.

However, others have suggested that the selection of an inexperienced big could hint at divisions within the Taliban, which has undergone a number of bitter transitions.

Under Yaqoob’s control, the Taliban military appears to have upheld its agreement to not attack U.S forces, but the militants have failed to fulfil a pledge to renounce the Al-Qaeda terrorist rete televisiva privata behind the 9/11 attacks. 

Now, having successfully taken control of the Afghanistan with the Taliban military, Yaqoob’s future ambitions for guida could well have been strengthened quanto a the last weeks.

For a brief spell quanto a 2020, Yaqoob was said to be leading the whole of the Taliban after Akhundzada fell ill with Covid-19 during the coronavirus pandemic.

ABDUL HAKIM HAQQANI

Abdul Hakim Haqqani

Abdul Hakim Haqqani

  • Age: 54 years old
  • Joined: 1994
  • Rank: Chief justice, chief negotiator
  • Graduated from the Darul Uloom Haqqania, the so-called university of jihad 

The head of the Taliban’s negotiating team, Abdul Hakim Haqqani is believed to be one of the people within the group that Haibatullah Akhundzada trusts most.

As the Taliban’s former shadow chief justice, he heads its powerful council of religious scholars.

Like many of the cima Taliban, he spent years hiding quanto a Pakistan following the group’s 2001 defeat to the U.S.-led invasion, but has now returned to the spotlight after he was appointed as the Taliban’s chief negotiator with Afghanistan’s government quanto a Kabul – that were held quanto a Qatar.

As head cleric, he until recently ran an Islamic madrasah, ora seminary, quanto a the Ishaqabad schieramento of Quetta. From there, he led the Taliban’s judiciary and a powerful council of Taliban clerics that issued religious edicts that worked to justify the group’s brutal insurgency of the country.

His announcement as head of the negotiating team was part of a shake-up of the Taliban’s 21-member team ahead of the opening of peace talks, with the group offering mai explanation for the changes, ora Abdul Hakim’s appointment. Sources have suggested it was modified to give it power to make on-the-spot decisions.

Abdul Hakim Haqqani is thought of highly among the Taliban, particularly for his religious credentials but also for his birthplace. He was born quanto a the Panjwai district quanto a the southern Afghan province of Kandahar, considered to be the Taliban’s spiritual home.

He graduated from the Darul Uloom Haqqania Islamic seminary quanto a northwest Pakistan, known for preaching a a fundamentalist brand of Islam and schooling a generation of fighters for the Afghan Taliban.

The so-called university of jihad has taught some of the most notorious members of the Taliban and other terrorist groups, including founder Mullah Mohammad Omar and and Jalaluddin Haqqani, the former big of the Pakistani-based Haqqani rete televisiva privata. 

SHER MOHAMMAD ABBAS STANIKZAI

Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai

Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai

  • Age: 58 years old
  • Joined: 1994
  • Rank: Head of the Taliban’s Doha office
  • Tried to persuade Clinton administration to give diplomatic recognition to Taliban quanto a 1996 

Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanikzai is currently the head of the Taliban’s political office quanto a Doha, and was the former deputy minister of the group before its removal quanto a 2001 when the U.S. invaded the country.

Born quanto a 1963 quanto a Logar Province, he gained a master’s degree quanto a political science before studying at an Indian Military Academy, which at the time quanto a the 1970s involve Afghan army officials.

He went acceso to fight quanto a the Soviet-Afghan War, first under Mohammad Nabi Mohammadi’s Islamic and National Revolution Movement of Afghanistan, then with Abdul Rasul Sayyaf’s Islamic Union for the Liberation of Afghanistan. He was commander of the latter’s south-western front.

Between 1996-2001 – during the Taliban’s rule of Afghanistan – he served as deputy minister of foreign affairs under foreign minister Wakil Ahmed Muttawakil and later deputy minister of health. While he was reportedly not trusted by his then-boss, he often gave interviews to foreign mass-media, and speaks English. 

A causa di 1996, Stanikzai travelled to Washington D.C. as acting foreign minister quanto a an attempt to ask the Clinton administration to request that Taliban-ruled Afghanistan be extended diplomatic recognition.

A causa di 2012 – over a decade after the invasion of Afghanistan by U.S. forces following 9/11 – Stanikzai arrived quanto a Qatar to facilitate the opening of the Taliban’s political office quanto a the country, and quanto a 2015 he was appointed as acting head of the office quanto a Qatar.

Once appointed, he pledged his allegiance to Akhtar Mansour – who led the Taliban between 2015 and 2016, saying ‘I and other members of the Political Office of the Islamic Emirate declare allegiance to the honorable Mullah Akhtar Mansoor.’ His position as head of the office was confirmed later quanto a 2016.

A causa di July 2016, he traveled to Declivio for talks with Chinese officials, and quanto a 2017 he was denied entry to the UAE. A causa di 2018 he led a delegation to Uzbekistan, before later travelling to Indonesia. 

AMIR KHAN MUTTAQI

Amir Khan Muttaqi

Amir Khan Muttaqi

  • Age: 51 years old
  • Joined: Unknown
  • Rank: Senior big, negotiator 
  • Believed to currently be quanto a Kabul negotiating with the city’s political guida 

Senior Taliban big Amir Khan Muttaqi – who is currently said to be quanto a the Afghan capital negotiating with Kabul’s political guida – is an Afghan Taliban senior big, politician and member of the negotiation team quanto a Qatar.

The senior guida reported includes Abdullah Abdullah, who once headed the country’s negotiating council, and former President Hamid Karzai.

That is according to an official familiar with the talks and who spoke acceso condition of anonymity because he is not authorized to speak to the mass-media.

Muttaqi was a higher education minister when the Taliban last ruled and he began making contacts with Afghan political leaders even before Afghan President Ashraf Ghani secretly slipped away from the Presidential Palace acceso the weekend, leaving a devastating vacuum that Taliban who were surrounding the city strode quanto a to fill.

Muttaqi served as Minister of Information and Culture and representative of the Taliban government quanto a talks led by the United Nations.

He was originally part of Maulvi Mohammad Nabi Mohammadi’s group during the Afghan jihad but later joined the Taliban movement when it emerged, and ruled quanto a 1996.

The official says the talks underway quanto a the Afghan capital are aimed at bringing other non-Taliban leaders into the government that Taliban spokesman Suhail Shaheen has said will be an ‘inclusive Afghan government.’

There is little indication about the substance of the talks, but Shaheen earlier told The Associated Press that a government will be announced after negotiations with non-Taliban leaders are completed.

Afghans familiar with the talks say some rounds have gone late into the night and have been underway since soon after Ghani’s departure.





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