KABUL: Afghanistan’s government has addressed the growing leadership crisis in the Taliban for the first time, saying it won’t deal with the militant group separately from other “armed opposition” in the country.
The statement Monday from President Ashraf Ghani’s office also says it will not accept any “parallel political structure” opposed to the Afghan government. That refers to the Taliban, who still call themselves the “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.”
Fledgling peace talks between the Taliban and the government halted last week when officials announced Taliban figurehead Mullah Mohammad Omar had died in April 2013.
Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansoor took over as leader of the Taliban, but relatives of Mullah Omar have contested his appointment, demanding a full vote of the group’s militants as their nearly 14-year insurgency continues.