Taliban supreme leader makes rare appearance to mark Eid al-Fitr | Taliban News

Haibatullah Akhunzada appeared for under the second time since taking management of the Taliban in 2016 and hailed the ‘safety’ state of affairs in Afghanistan.

Afghanistan’s supreme chief Haibatullah Akhunzada appeared for under the second time since taking control of the Taliban in 2016 to inform worshippers celebrating Eid al-Fitr that the Taliban had achieved freedom and safety since seizing energy final 12 months.

Flanked by safety, Akhunzada spoke days after a strong explosion ripped by a mosque in Kabul, killing greater than 50 worshippers after Friday prayers – the newest of a sequence of assaults on civilian targets in Afghanistan throughout Ramadan.

“Congratulations on victory, freedom and success,” Akhunzada informed hundreds of worshippers on Saturday on the Eidgah mosque within the southern metropolis of Kandahar, the group’s de facto energy centre. “Congratulations on this safety and for the Islamic system.”

Whereas the variety of bombings throughout the nation has dropped since Kabul fell to the Taliban final August, assaults soared over the ultimate two weeks of Ramadan, which ended on Saturday for Afghans.

Dozens of civilians have been killed within the primarily sectarian assaults – some claimed by the ISIL (ISIS) armed group – focusing on members of the Shia and Sufi Muslim communities.

Taliban chief Mullah Haibatullah Akhunzada is seen in an undated {photograph} [File: Reuters]

Akhunzada delivered his transient handle from one of many entrance rows of worshippers in Kandahar with out turning to face the group, in line with social media posts. Taliban officers didn’t permit journalists to strategy him. Two helicopters hovered over the mosque for the two-hour occasion.

In October, he had visited the Darul Uloom Hakimiah mosque in Kandahar, in line with an audio recording circulated by Taliban social media accounts.

On Sunday, many Afghans stayed indoors after the latest lethal assaults.

“The state of affairs of our folks could be very unhappy, particularly after what occurred within the mosques,” Kabul resident Ahmad Shah Hashemi stated. “Many younger and outdated folks have been martyred. The folks of Afghanistan don’t have anything however sorrow.”

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Akhunzada’s low profile has fed hypothesis about his function within the new Taliban authorities – shaped after the armed group took management of Kabul on August 15 – and even rumours of his demise.

Akhunzada, believed to be in his 70s, has been the non secular chief of the Taliban since 2016. He succeeded Mullah Akhtar Mansoor who was killed in a US drone strike inside Pakistan.

His public profile has largely been restricted to the discharge of messages throughout Islamic holidays, and Akhunzada is believed to spend most of his time in Kandahar.

On Friday, in a message launched before Eid al-Fitr, he made no point out of the bloodshed that has rocked Afghanistan over Ramadan, as an alternative praising the Taliban’s constructing of “a powerful Islamic and nationwide military” and “robust intelligence organisation”.

He additionally referred to as on the worldwide group to recognise the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. The Taliban-led authorities is but to be recognised by any nation because it returned to energy final August, 20 years after it was toppled in a US-led invasion.

Palestinians mark prisoners’ day amid Jerusalem tensions | Occupied West Bank News

Gaza Metropolis – Dozens of individuals have gathered reverse the headquarters of the Worldwide Committee of the Pink Cross (ICRC) within the besieged Gaza Strip to demand that Israel instantly launch Palestinian prisoners.

The demonstration on Sunday was considered one of a number of held throughout the occupied Palestinian territories to mark Palestinian Prisoners Day, an event on which Palestinians historically present solidarity with these held in Israeli prisons.

More than 4,400 Palestinians are at present held in Israeli jails. Greater than 500 detainees, together with ladies and minors, are held in “administrative detention”, below which suspects are held without charge or trial for an indefinite time interval.

Samira al-Haj Ahmad, 56, who goes by Umm Raed, has joined the annual protests and brought half in weekly solidarity sit-ins for the previous 17 years.

Her son Raed al-Hajj Ahmad is being detained at Nafha, a jail within the Naqab (Negev) area of Israel. He was sentenced to twenty years of imprisonment in 2004 after trying an assault on the Beit Hanoun (Erez) checkpoint in northern Gaza.

“The struggling of our sons in Israeli prisons continues, troublesome circumstances and harsh remedy by the jailers,” she advised Al Jazeera, holding Raed’s picture.

“The flower of my son’s youth went in jail. He was solely 20 when he was detained, now he’s 38,” she stated. “Each month of Ramadan we miss him on the iftar desk, our lives haven’t any style with out him.”

A mother of a Palestinian prisoner holds a poster with his photo.
Samira al-Haj Ahmad, 56, mom of a prisoner sentenced to twenty years in Israeli jails [Mohammed Salem/ Al Jazeera]

Different occasions to mark the day passed off within the districts of Ramallah, Nablus and Hebron within the occupied West Financial institution, the place contributors walked in demonstrations and held banners to indicate solidarity with the prisoners.

This yr’s Prisoners Day comes after more than 300 Palestinians were arrested and at least 160 wounded as Israeli forces raided the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem on Friday.

“Day by day there are dozens of younger males who’re arrested, as we noticed two days in the past in Jerusalem and within the West Financial institution,” Um Raed stated.

“Nobody cares concerning the variety of prisoners that Israel is holding. Everybody should work for the discharge of all our youth detained by Israel.”

In accordance with the rights group Addameer, 12 of 32 Palestinian ladies held in Israeli prisons are moms, and about 160 Palestinian kids aged 12-17 are in Israeli detention.

Fatima al-Ziq, an ex-prisoner, joined the Palestinian Prisoners' Day protests in Gaza.
Fatima al-Ziq, a former prisoner, joined the protests [Mohammed Salem/ Al Jazeera]

Former prisoner Fatima al-Ziq, 52, advised Al Jazeera that the problem of prisoners ought to be a prime precedence for the Palestinian management and political factions.

“From my previous expertise I lived my most troublesome days in Israeli prisons. The jail service used all measures of psychological and bodily torture towards us,” she stated.

“The insurance policies of deprivation of household visits, solitary confinement, administrative detention are nonetheless used towards prisoners.”

Al-Ziq was arrested in Could 2007 when she was two months pregnant on the Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing, accusd of trying to hold out an assault in Israel. She later gave start to her son Yousef in an Israeli jail.

She and her son have been freed together with one other 19 Palestinian ladies as a part of a deal in 2009 between Israel and Hamas, the Palestinian faction that guidelines Gaza. Below the deal, Hamas produced a so-called “proof of life” video of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, who had been held captive for greater than three years and Israel launched the ladies prisoners.

Um Ibrahim Baroud, 82 years old, a mother of a released prisoner Ibrahim Baroud, who was released in April 2013 after spending 27 years in Israeli prisons.
Um Ibrahim Baroud has continued to participate in prisoners’ day occasions after her son was launched from jail [Mohammed Salem/ Al Jazeera]

Um Ibrahim Baroud, 82, is the mom of Ibrahim Baroud, who was launched in April 2013 after spending 27 years in Israeli prisons.

“My struggling whereas ready for the discharge of my son made me really feel just like the mom of each prisoner,” she advised Al Jazeera.

“All of the prisoners are my sons, and I pray for his or her launch daily. Nobody feels the struggling of the prisoner and his household besides the one who tasted this cup,” she stated.

In 1995, Umm Ibrahim co-founded a weekly sit-in for Palestinian prisoners’ households reverse the ICRC headquarters in an try to lift consciousness concerning the plight of Palestinian prisoners.  Till at this time, folks proceed to collect on the website every Monday morning.

“I had this concept with one other prisoner’s mom. We wished to verify our sons weren’t forgotten,” she stated.

“It was simply the 2 of us standing outdoors the ICRC the primary time – however we knew the subsequent week there could be three or 4 of us, after which, slowly, extra moms joined us,” she stated.

Umm Ibrahim known as for the discharge of Palestinian prisoners and to cease Israel’s punitive measures towards them.

“The worldwide group ought to act to cease the brutal insurance policies of administrative detention, youngster detention and launch these with excessive sentences.”

Infographic showing how many Palestinians are held in Israeli prisons in 2022 for Palestinian prisoner's day