The capture of Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, the Taliban's Number 2, is a big success to the Obama Administration and a personal blow to the elusive Afghan Taliban chief Mullah Omar, top US officials have said.
"This operation was an enormous success," a senior official told ABC News after the news about the arrest of
Mullah Baradar was first reported by The New York Times.
"It is a very big deal," the official said, adding that Baradar is now providing intelligence.
A US counter-terrorism official, while refusing to confirm the news of Baradar's capture, told ABC News that "if
he were taken off the battlefield, it would deal a major setback to the Afghan Taliban and be a personal blow to Mullah
Omar, who has relied heavily on him for years.
Last summer, in an interview to the Newsweek, Mullah Wakil Ahmed Muttawakil, the former foreign minister in the
Taliban regime said that Omar has put Baradar in charge.
It was Omar's idea and his policy to stay quiet in a safe place, because he has a high price on his head,
while Baradar leads.
Baradar had told the Newsweek in an interview, "The history of Afghanistan shows that Afghans never get tired of
struggling until they have freed their country.
We shall continue our jihad till the expulsion of our enemy from our land."