New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Taliban have postponed the formation of a new government in Afghanistan for next week, their spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said on Saturday, as the insurgent group struggles to give shape to a broad-based and inclusive administration acceptable to the international community.

The insurgent group was expected to announce on Saturday the formation of the new government in Kabul, likely to be led by the outfit's co-founder Mulla Abdul Ghani Baradar. This is the second time that the Taliban have delayed the formation of the new government in Kabul since they seized Kabul on August 15. "The announcement about the new government and Cabinet members will now be made next week," Mujahid said without giving further details.

Khalil Haqqani, a member of a committee constituted by the Taliban to negotiate talks with different groups over the formation of the government, said the Taliban's bid to form a broad-based government in Kabul acceptable to the world, in fact, is causing the delay.

"The Taliban can form a government of their own but they are now focussing to have an administration in which all parties, groups and sections of the society have proper representation," he said, acknowledging that "the Taliban alone will not be acceptable to the world."

Former Afghan premier and head of Jamiat e Islami Afghanistan Gulbuddin Hekmatyar and brother of former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, who have announced their support to the Taliban, will be given representation in the Taliban government, he said. The Taliban are also in the process of negotiating with other stakeholders to seek their support for their government, he added.

Earlier, sources said that Baradar, the Chairman of the Taliban's Political Office in Doha, Qatar, is likely to be the head of the Taliban government in Kabul.

In New Delhi, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said India's immediate focus in Afghanistan was to ensure that Afghan soil is not used for terrorist activities against it and it was still "very early days" to talk about any possible recognition of the Taliban. Earlier this week, the Indian envoy to Qatar Deepak Mittal held talks with a senior Taliban leader in Doha.

"We used the opportunity to convey our concerns whether it is in getting people out (from Afghanistan) or on the issue of terrorism. We received a positive response," Bagchi said.

According to sources, the new government in Kabul will be based on the lines of the Iranian leadership, with the group's top religious leader Mullah Hebatullah Akhundzada as Afghanistan's supreme authority.

In Iran, the supreme leader is the highest political and religious authority of the country. He ranks above the president and appoints the heads of the military, the government, and the judiciary. The supreme leader has the final say in the political, religious and military affairs of the country.


(With PTI Inputs)

Posted By: Talib Khan