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Al Qaida leader pledges allegiance to new Taliban chief

Published 13/08/2015

Al Qaida has reportedly pledged allegiance to Mullah Omar's Taliban successor, Mullah Akhtar Mansoor
Al Qaida has reportedly pledged allegiance to Mullah Omar's Taliban successor, Mullah Akhtar Mansoor

Al Qaida leader Ayman al-Zawahiri has purportedly pledged his group's allegiance to the new leader of the Taliban following the death of Mullah Mohammad Omar.

The pledge came in a 10-minute audio recording that surfaced on social media and was later carried by the SITE Intelligence Group.

The recording, which resembles previous audio clips released by the al Qaida leader, pledges allegiance to Mullah Omar's successor, Mullah Akhtar Mansoor.

Afghanistan announced late last month that Mullah Omar died more than two years ago. The Taliban later confirmed his death and appointed Mullah Mansoor to succeed him.

But Mullah Omar's family has rejected the decision, and it appears to have widened a rift within the Taliban between those who favour Pakistan-brokered peace talks and those who want to continue waging their 14-year insurgency.

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