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Taliban splinter group shows peace talks readiness

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AT Monitoring Desk-KABUL: After defying allegiance to Mullah Akhtar Mansour as the successor of Mullah Omar—the late Taliban figurehead, an Afghan splinter group vowed readiness for peace talks with the Afghan government, on Saturday.

The breakaway group’s deputy chief Mullah Abdul Manan told BBC on Saturday that if the foreign forces completely withdraw from Afghanistan, the group will be ready to talk peace with the Afghan government.

The splintered group elected Mullah Mohammad Rassoul as its new leader, last week. Purportedly he was elected in the western Ghor province where the Taliban doesn’t see any trouble with the government and showed readiness for peace talks.

Mullah Omar passed away two years ago in Pakistan.  His death was kept a top secret, which was leaked sharply after the representatives of the Afghan government and the Taliban held the first round of face to face talks in Pakistan’s city of Murree, in July. Mullah Omar’s death news blown up the peace talks and also caused ruptures in the Taliban movement. A number of disgruntled Taliban alleged that Mullah Akhtar Mansour—the new Taliban leader, was appointed by Pakistan’s premier spy agency—ISI.  Mullah Mansour has been accused of killing Mullah Omar by a large number of the Taliban. He has been held in sharp criticism for keeping the death of Mullah Omar in secrecy for two years under the dictates of ISI. Mullah Abdul Manan alleged that Mullah Mansour killed Mullah Omar. Mullah Mansour has also been accused of jailing and torturing many other key members of the Taliban movement. Mullah Rasoul, the pick of the splintered group, had been governor for Nimroz and Farah provinces during the Taliban regime back in 90s. The breakaway Taliban group has appointed Abdul Manan Niazi, Mansour Dadullah and Shir Mohammad Akhundzada as deputies in military affairs and Mullah Baz Mohammad Haris in political affairs.