The Taliban in Afghanistan have named a new interim government led by hardliners as the group pledges to implement a strict Islamic rule over the country of roughly 40 million. The new cabinet of the freshly restored Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan contains no women and no positions for opposition members or ethnic or religious minorities.
Few in the international community foresaw the speed with which the militant Islamist group would take over Afghanistan, making a series of stunning territorial gains in July and August as the U.S. withdrew its troops to end its 20-year war in the country.
The Taliban’s moves so far show a failure to meet the group’s earlier pledge of an “inclusive” government, even as the moves put Western financial aid at risk and do not bode well for those who wanted to see Afghanistan rid of terrorist activity. Experts warn that the global jihadi movement will feel emboldened by what they see in Afghanistan as a triumph.