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May 10, 2020

Mulla Omer’s son made Taliban military chief

ISLAMABAD: The son of the Afghan Taliban's late founder Mulla Mohammad Omer has been appointed as the Taliban military chief in a political reshuffle to check the power of his predecessor, senior militant figures have said.

Mulla Mohammad Yaqoob has been announced head of the military commission for the movement. His appointment was confirmed as the Taliban have significantly ramped up attacks following a withdrawal agreement with the United States.

The appointment of Mulla Mohammad Yaqoob reins in the former military leader Sardar Ibrahim as the movement closes in on negotiations with the Afghan government. Mulla Yaqoob will keep his previous post as deputy to the movement's overall leader Mulla Haibatullah Akhunzada, but will now also oversee military operations, reports the Telegraph. Zabiullah Mujahid, spokesman for the Taliban, confirmed the appointment but would not comment on the reasons for it.

The post of military chief has formally been vacant for several years, but Ibrahim has been de facto nationwide leader while officially deputy in charge of southern military operations. Ibrahim will remain as Mulla Yaqoob's deputy.