Afghan Taliban announces successor

Afghan Taliban announces successor to Mullah Mansour

Kabul, May 25 (IANS) The Afghan Taliban on Wednesday announced a new leader to replace former chief Mullah Akhtar Mansour who was killed in a US drone strike in Pakistan.

In an online statement, the Taliban acknowledged Mansour’s death for the first time and named Mawlawi Haibatullah Akhundzada as his successor after he was unanimously voted by the leadership council members, Khaama Press reported.

The statement further added that leader of Haqqani terrorist network, Sirajuddin Haqqani and late Taliban chief Mullah OmarÂ’s son Mullah Yaqoob were appointed as deputy supreme leader of the group.

Mullah Mansour was killed in a US drone strike in Pakistan’s Balochistan province of Pakistan on Saturday.

The groupÂ’s leadership council started negotiations for the appointment of MansoorÂ’s successor a day after he was targeted in the airstrike.

Earlier reports suggested that Haqqani and Mullah Yaqoob were the possible successor of Mullah Mansoor.

The Taliban on Tuesday said the death of its leader will not have any affect on the groupÂ’s insurgency.

The US Department of Defence first informed about the attack on Mulllah Mansoor but his killing was later confirmed by the Afghan security institutions including the National Directorate of Security.

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