February 6, 2023 Special Dispatch No. 10463

Islamic Religious Scholars From Palestine, Egypt, Sudan, Libya Meet With Afghan Taliban Government Leaders, Applaud 'Victory Of Jihadi Struggle Of Afghans'

February 6, 2023
Egypt, Sudan, Palestinians, North Africa | Special Dispatch No. 10463

A delegation of Islamic religious scholars from Palestine and other Muslim countries traveled to Afghanistan in January 2023 and met with senior officials from the Afghan Taliban government, including Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani, who is on the FBI's Most Wanted list, deputy prime ministers, and others, according to Afghan newspapers and social media posts.[1]

The Islamic religious scholars, from Egypt, Sudan, Libya, and Palestine, included Sheikh Dr. Mohammad Al-Sagheer, member of the board of directors of the Qatar-supported International Union of  Muslim Scholars (IUMS), along with Dr. Abdul Hayee Yusuf, Sheikh Sami Al-Saadi, Sheikh Dr. Mohammad Abdul Karim, Sheikh Maher Salem, and Sheikh Nawab Al-Takrori.

The scholars presented a model of Al-Aqsa Mosque to Sirajuddin Haqqani, who is on the FBI's Most Wanted list.

On January 6, 2023, the Islamic scholars called on the Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani and lauded "the victory of jihadi struggle of Afghans" calling it a surprising epic, state-run Bakhtar News Agency (BNA) reported.[2] According to the Pashtu-language report, the Islamic scholars expressed their full support for the Taliban government in Afghanistan, saying this support was their Islamic responsibility.[3]

According to the report, Sirajuddin Haqqani, the chief of the Taliban's Haqqani Network, which has been responsible for major terror attacks on the U.S. Embassy and other NATO targets in Afghanistan, stressed unity in the Muslim world and termed unity, obedience, and honesty as the basic causes of the victory of the struggle against the U.S. and NATO forces.[4]

Islamic scholars meet with Deputy Prime Minister Abdul Ghani Baradar

Sirajuddin Haqqani thanked the religious scholars for their support and urged them to inform their respective countries and the world of the sufferings of Afghanistan so that everyone could support Afghanistan according to their capacity. During the meeting, the visiting Islamic scholars presented a replica of Al-Aqsa Mosque to the Taliban interior minister.[5]

On January 7, the delegation of scholars called on Minister For Martyrs' Affairs Mullah Abdul Majeed Akhund. Mullah Abdul Majeed Akhund urged the members of the visiting delegation to convey the voice of "this innocent segment" to the world.[6]

The delegation of Islamic scholars from Egypt, Sudan, Libya, and Palestine met and discussed education-related matters the same day with the Taliban Higher Education Minister Sheikh Nida Mohammad Nadeem, who has completely banned women from colleges and universities.[7]

The Islamic scholars also met with the Taliban Higher Education Minister Sheikh Nida Mohammad Nadeem, who has banned women from colleges and universities.

On January 8, 2023, the Islamic religious scholars met with Khairullah Khairkhwa – the minister for information and culture and senior Taliban leader who spent 12 years in the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay before being released along with four other Taliban prisoners in 2014 in exchange for U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl. Khairkhwa said on the occasion that the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA, i.e., the Afghan Taliban) does not only want the goodness, peace, and development of Afghanistan but also of the entire Islamic Ummah and the world.[8]

"Our aim is the implementation of the instructions of the Islamic shari'a and we want to pave the way for a good Islamic life to our countrymen," Khairkhwa said, adding that the Islamic world, especially Afghanistan, faces negative messaging from the West.[9] Sheikh Dr. Mohammad Al-Sagheer, delegation head, and other delegation members lauded the Taliban's 20-year jihad against U.S. and NATO forces and declared it a victory for the entire Muslim world.[10]

The Islamic scholars meet with Taliban Minister for Refugee Affairs Khairullah Khairkhwa.

Also on January 8, the delegation of scholars called on Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar and congratulated Afghans on their victory in the jihad against United States and NATO countries.

"During the talks, the head of the visiting delegation and its members called the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan's jihad against the U.S. and NATO a surprising epic and congratulated the Afghan nation on this victory," says a statement posted on the website of the Taliban government's media and information center.[11] According to the report, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar urged the visiting delegation to present the true picture of Afghanistan to their respective nations and the rest of the Islamic World.[12]

On January 9, the delegation of Islamic scholars met with IEA spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid. On Twitter, Zabihullah Mujahid said that he had met with religious scholars from Yemen, Sudan Palestine, Egypt and Libya. "They had very good advice, huge influence, and positive attitudes. [They] were happy to visit Afghanistan and congratulated our whole nation on the successes," Mujahid tweeted in Pashtu and Dari, the two main languages spoken in Afghanistan.[13]

Islamic scholars' meeting with Minister For Refugees And Repatriation Al-Haj Khalilur Rahman Haqqani.

On January 9, the religious scholars met with Minister for Refugees and Repatriation Al-Haj Khalilur Rahman Haqqani, uncle of Taliban Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani. The ministry of refugees tweeted that Khalilur Rahman Haqqani met with leading religious scholars led by Mohammad Al-Sagheer, a teacher at Egypt's Al-Azhar University. "We are happy over the Islamic Emirate's victory and the aim of the visit is to share our happiness with you. All the Arab countries have love for the Taliban and pray for their success," the ministry of refugees quoted Mohammad Al-Sagheer as saying.[14]

On January 10, the delegation met with Deputy Prime Minister For Administration Maulvi Abdul Salam Hanafi. During the meeting, the Islamic scholars praised the Afghan nation's struggle and said the Islamic system was the fruit of the flood of the thousands of martyrs and countless sacrifices of Afghans, according to a statement released by the Taliban's Government Media and Information Centre.[15]

"The ulema [religious scholars] appreciated the general pardon announced by Emir-ul-Momineen Sheikh Hibbatullah Akhundzada and said that the general pardon resulted in saving the lives of thousands of people of Afghanistan and the happiness for the Muslim Ummah in the whole world," the statement noted.[16]

The delegation meets with Mullah Abdul Majeed Akhund

On January 10, which was the last day of their visit to Afghanistan, the delegation addressed a press conference in Kabul. The members of the delegation declared the success of the Taliban in Afghanistan as a success for all the Muslims of the world. "The success of the Taliban created hopes in the hearts of the Muslims and Muslim countries should establish relations with the Taliban, extend them assistance and formally recognize their government. They also stressed that Afghanistan's frozen assets should be released," they said, according to a report.[17]

The delegation of Muslim religious scholars also met with the head of the academy of sciences, the education minister, Taliban soldiers, and other Afghan leaders. Journalists in Afghanistan say that the visiting delegation of Islamic scholars wanted to meet with the Taliban supreme leader Sheikh Hibbatullah Akhundzada but the request was denied amid continuing speculation that the Taliban leader is dead or that a political decoy is impersonating him.[18]


[2] (Afghanistan), January 7, 2023.

[3] (Afghanistan), January 7, 2023.

[4] (Afghanistan), January 7, 2023.

[5], January 6, 2023.

[6] (Afghanistan), accessed February 3, 2023.

[7], January 7, 2023.

[8] (Afghanistan), accessed February 3, 2023.

[9] (Afghanistan), accessed February 3, 2023.

[10] (Afghanistan), accessed February 3, 2023.

[11] (Afghanistan), January 9, 2023.

[12] (Afghanistan), January 9, 2023.

[13], January 9, 2023.

[14], January 9, 2023.

[15] (Afghanistan), January 10, 2023.

[16] (Afghanistan), January 10, 2023.

[17], January 10, 2023.

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