Not Aware of Presence of Al-Qaeda Leader in Kabul, Says Taliban

8/4/2022

Taliban in a statement said that the group has no knowledge of Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of al-Qaeda’s entry and residence in Afghanistan.

The statement has been issued five days after US president Joe Biden confirmed that al-Zawahiri was killed in a drone strike in Kabul.

On Tuesday, the Taliban confirmed the US airstrike on a residential house in Kabul.

The Taliban stressed that the group’s intelligence agencies will investigate thoroughly various aspects of the strike.

The Taliban has emphasized that there are no threats to the United States and other countries from Afghan soil. The Taliban added that this group demands the implementation of the Doha Agreement.

While the Taliban is in denial regarding previous knowledge about al-Zawahiri’s presence in Afghanistan, John Kirby, the US National Security Council coordinator for strategic communications, said in a press conference recently that "we have clearly told the Taliban that we know what they did and who they sheltered".

Kirby added that after Ayman al-Zawahiri was killed, the Taliban took steps to hide evidence of his presence.

Earlier, the US State Department issued a statement saying that by hosting and sheltering the leader of al-Qaeda in Kabul, the Taliban grossly violated the Doha Agreement. The US State Department stressed that the Taliban also betrayed the Afghan people and their own stated desire for recognition and normalization of relations with the international community.

Taliban has warned that in case of repeated attacks on Afghanistan, the US will be responsible for the consequences.

According to the Doha agreement between the Taliban and the United States, the group has pledged that it will not allow any individual or group, including Al-Qaeda, to use Afghanistan's soil against the United States and its allies.

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