Top Taliban minister praises suicide bombers, promises $125 and plot of land
Sirajuddin Haqqani, who is the home minister in the Taliban government, was seen praying and embracing men in a glitzy ballroom at the hotel in Kabul.
A top Taliban minister, Sirajuddin Haqqani, has praised the sacrifices of suicide bombers as” heroes of Islam and the country" as he met their relatives in an upscale hotel in Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul, according to a report on Tuesday.
Sirajuddin Haqqani, who is the home minister in the Taliban government, was seen praying and embracing men in a glitzy ballroom at the hotel in images posted by pro-Taliban social media accounts and local media on Tuesday. "Haqqani praised the jihad and sacrifice of the martyrs and mujahideen,” Afghan state broadcaster RTA reported.
The broadcaster said that Sirajuddin, who is listed as a terrorist by the United States with a $10 million bounty on his head, "stressed that we must refrain from any betrayal of the aspirations of the martyrs" and promised $125 and a plot of land for each family.
The Intercontinental Hotel was stormed by Taliban gunmen in January 2018, who opened fire on guests and staff and took dozens hostage.
The Haqqani network was formed by Sirajuddin's father Jalaluddin Haqqani and is the most feared faction of the Taliban, blamed for some of the deadliest attacks in Afghanistan during the last two decades.
Meanwhile, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday that his country will not officially recognise the Taliban for now and wants the Islamist group to make good on promises it made when it came to power in Afghanistan. Lavrov said the Taliban’s promises included, in particular, those on political and ethnic inclusivity in the make-up of the government.
Taliban recaptured Afghanistan overtaking the western-backed government on August 15 this year and has since then formed an all-male government and rolled back all rights gained by women and girls in the country.