The Taliban's interim government in Afghanistan was likely to take oath of office today (September 11), a day which also marks the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks in the United States.
According to reports, the newly-formed Taliban government had rolled out invitations to various countries to be part of the oath-taking ceremony, including China, Turkey, Pakistan, Iran, Qatar, India and interestingly, the US.
Recently, Taliban announced the names of their interim government officials, emphasising that the formation will be under a caretaker setup. The Taliban are seeking international recognition and have called on the countries to reopen their embassies in the war-torn nation.
"We recognise that peace and stability are must for investments. We want good relations with all the neighbours, including China," said Zabiullah Mujahid, spokesperson for the Taliban.
"The war has ended, the country is getting out of the crisis. It is now the time for peace and reconstruction. We need people to support us. Afghanistan has the right to be recognised. The international community should open their embassies in Kabul," he added.
Meanwhile, the Taliban have decided not to hold the swearing-in ceremony on the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. According to reports, the ceremony was cancelled to save money at a time when the country is reeling under cash shortage. However, some reports said that the ceremony was cancelled as a result of pressure from its allies as the event could further jeopardise the Taliban’s prospects of global recognition.
A member of the Afghan government's cultural commission, Inamullah Samangani, said the ceremony was cancelled a few days ago. "In order not to confuse people further, the leadership of the Islamic Emirate announced the part of the Cabinet, and it has already started to work," he tweeted.
For the unversed, Mullah Hasan Akhund was named as the acting Prime Minister while Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar as his deputy. The 33-member Cabinet, which has no woman, include several high-profile leaders of the insurgent group, including Sirajuddin Haqqani, a specially designated global terrorist of the dreaded Haqqani Network.
(With IANS inputs)