Mullah Omar

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Taliban Publish Biography of New Leader

Fighters meet to resolve Mullah Akhtar Mansoor dispute

(Newser) - The Afghan Taliban have published a biography of their new leader as hundreds of insurgents meet to resolve a dispute over his appointment. The detailed biography, emailed to journalists today, offers the story of Mullah Akhtar Mansoor, who now leads the Taliban in its fight against the Afghan government. He... More »

How Taliban Kept Leader's Death Secret for 2 Years

It helped that only one person was allowed to see him

(Newser) - The Taliban has confirmed that leader Mullah Omar is dead, and it appears he has been so for two years now. How did the Taliban pull it off for so long? A report in the New York Times helps explain: The reclusive Omar steadily reduced the number of Taliban members... More »

Taliban's Leader Died 2 Years Ago

Afghan sources confirm Mullah Omar is long dead

(Newser) - "We confirm officially that he is dead." The "we" is Afghanistan's main intelligence agency. The "he" is Taliban supreme commander Mullah Omar. Afghan government sources told the BBC earlier today that the one-eyed leader, who had been in hiding since the 9/11 attacks, died two... More »

Al-Qaeda Launches India Branch

Zawahri vows to wage jihad across subcontinent

(Newser) - With an even more brutal group of Islamic extremists capturing the world's attention, is al-Qaeda feeling neglected? In what analysts see as an effort to grab the spotlight from ISIS, al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahri has announced the formation of an Indian branch of the terror network that will "... More »

Fort Hood Suspect: I Was Protecting the Taliban

Hasan will argue he shot soldiers to protect Taliban leaders

(Newser) - Accused Fort Hood shooter Nidal Hasan gave his first public explanation for the 2009 rampage that killed 13 people yesterday: He was defending Taliban leaders. Hasan, who is representing himself in court , asked the judge for a three-month delay in the trial so he could switch his argument to a... More »

Afghan Cop Kills 2 US Troops

Killing is 6th 'green-on-blue' attack in 2 weeks

(Newser) - Two US soldiers were killed in Afghanistan this morning by an Afghan police officer, the sixth such "green on blue" killing in the past two weeks, reports the AP . One Afghan police officer was also seriously wounded in the attack. The attacker, who had been recruited by the village... More »

US May Swap Gitmo Inmates for Taliban Peace Deal

Negotiations near breakthrough, US officials say

(Newser) - After many months of secretive negotiations, peace talks between the US and the Taliban are at a turning point, reports Reuters , which cites senior US officials speaking under condition of anonymity. The US is considering transferring Taliban prisoners from Guantanamo Bay to Afghan custody in return for concessions from the... More »

Afghans Leaked US-Taliban Talks to End Them

US contact Tayyab Aga has fled to Europe

(Newser) - Someone in the Afghan presidential palace intentionally leaked the news that the US was negotiating with the Taliban, scuttling the talks and sending the US contact into hiding, sources tell the AP . Hamid Karzai didn't trust the US and feared any deal between it and the Taliban would diminish... More »

US-Taliban Talks Collapse

Taliban unhappy over media leaks

(Newser) - The US-Taliban talks have been cut off, thanks to media leaks. Western diplomats tell the Telegraph that confidentiality was a key condition of the talks, held in Germany and Qatar in March and April, but they were halted after just three meetings because details were leaked. Among other things, the... More »

Taliban: We Were Hacked; Mullah Omar Is Alive

Death reports were fake, says spokesperson

(Newser) - Everyone's getting hacked these days—even the Taliban, apparently. A spokesperson in Afghanistan tells the AP and the Los Angeles Times that the group's leader, Mullah Mohammed Omar, is alive—and that it was a hacker who sent out text messages, emails, and Internet postings announcing Omar's... More »

Taliban Denies Report of Leader's Death

But intelligence bureau confirms Mullah Mohammad Omar cannot be located

(Newser) - Afghanistan’s main intelligence agency is investigating reports that Taliban leader Mohammad Omar cannot be located, the Washington Post reports. Rumblings that Omar and top commanders vanished from their hideout sometime during the last few days led to reports by some media outlets in the country that he may be... More »

With Osama Dead, Taliban, al-Qaeda May Part Ways

Bin Laden's death provides the opening for peace talks

(Newser) - Osama bin Laden's death is likely to make the Taliban rethink its alliance with al-Qaeda, which was likely initially based on a personal friendship between bin Laden and the Taliban's one-eyed leader, Mullah Mohammed Omar, analysts tell the AP . The US and Afghan governments won't negotiate a... More »

US Holding Direct, Secret Talks With Taliban

New Yorker: They're preliminary but mark a shift in strategy

(Newser) - The US is for the first time holding direct talks with senior Taliban officials in Afghanistan, reports Steve Coll in the New Yorker . He characterizes them as "exploratory" and not as formal peace negotiations, noting that supreme leader Mullar Omar is not a participant. The intent is to pave... More »

Bin Laden in House, Not Cave: Official

Al-Qaeda bosses living comfortably in Pakistan, says NATO insider

(Newser) - “Nobody in al-Qaeda is living in a cave”—instead, Osama bin Laden and other top figures are likely to be living rather comfortably in houses in Pakistan, under the protection of locals and some Pakistani intelligence, a NATO official tells CNN . Bin Laden has likely been roaming from... More »

US in Secret Talks With Ruthless Haqqani Network

Which have been described as 'extremely tentative'

(Newser) - The US and Afghan governments have both been in secret talks with the Haqqani network, which they have come to believe is the most powerful and ruthless of all the Afghan insurgent groups, sources tell the Guardian . The US has been talking to the network through intermediaries for more than... More »

Taliban, Karzai In Talks to End War

Leaders seeking peace deal, role in government: sources

(Newser) - The Taliban are in secret talks with the Afghan government to end the war, according to the Washington Post , which cites Arab and Afghan sources. The Taliban's representatives are this time authorized to speak on behalf of Mullah Omar and other leaders and "they are very, very serious about... More »

Karzai to Taliban: Join Peace Talks

Afghan president calls on Taliban leader to stop fighting

(Newser) - Hamid Karzai has officially invited Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar to take part in Afghan peace talks. The Afghan president hopes Omar "gives up fratricide, gives up bombings and blasts, stops causing casualties to Afghanistan's children, women, and men" and instead "joins the peace process," he said... More »

Our Victory Is 'Imminent': Taliban Leader

Meanwhile, Kandahar operation not slowing attacks

(Newser) - Mullah Omar, the elusive supreme leader of the Afghan Taliban, says the US is losing the war in Afghanistan. “The victory of our Islamic nation over the invading infidels is now imminent,” he said in an address celebrating Eid al-Fitr, which the SITE Intelligence group passed to the... More »

Taliban Leader Edges Closer to Peace Talks

Omar apparently no longer interested in ruling Afghanistan

(Newser) - Peace talks with the Taliban? The Times of London thinks it's a possibility after an interview with two liaisons of supreme leader Mullar Omar. The language is iffy—the story says Omar "indicated" that he "may be willing" to talk with western politicians—but an unnamed US military... More »

Afghans, Allies Split Over Taliban Talks

Karzai's invitation creates confusion

(Newser) - Afghan President Hamid Karzai has invited the Taliban to join peace talks this spring, but widespread confusion remains over who'll be doing the talking and what will be on the table. The British—and some senior American commanders—appear keener than the Obama administration to begin substantive talks, the Washington ... More »

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