Afghanistan Government

Afghan leaders see Taliban leader's death as hopeful sign

Associated Press

The killing of Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Mohammed Akhtar Mansour in a U.S. drone strike was greeted Sunday by Kabul's political leadership as a game-changer in efforts to end the long insurgent war plaguing Afghanistan. In a rare show of unity, President Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah both welcomed the news of Mansour's death as the removal of a man who unleashed violence against innocent civilians in Afghanistan and was widely regarded as an obstacle to peace within the militant group. In September 2015, Taliban fighters surprised Afghan security forces and overran the northern city of Kunduz -- the first time since their regime was overthrown in the 2001 U.S. invasion that they had captured a provincial capital. Mansour's death inside Pakistan could further damage the already deeply suspicious relationship between Kabul and Islamabad.