Hours after US President Joe Biden announced the death of Al-Qaeda Leader Ayman al-Zawahiri as a result of a US drone strike near Kabul last Saturday, questions over the latter's relationship with the current Afghan government emerged, especially after reports of him being a resident of a house owned by the Taliban interior minister Sirajuddin Haqqani.
Senior admin official says that Haqqani Taliban figures were aware of Zawahiri’s presence in the area in “clear violation of the Doha agreement,” and took steps to restrict access to the safe house after the strike and rapidly relocated members of al-Zawahiri’s family. https://t.co/25grfiLFYT— Natasha Bertrand (@NatashaBertrand) August 1, 2022
Even though many Americans expressed relief over the news of Ayman al-Zawahiri's death, especially since he was among the USA's most wanted terrorists since the 9/11 attacks, others had questions over the reason Ayman al-Zawahiri was killed in Afghanistan, despite the Doha agreement signed in February 2020 between the Taliban and the Trump administration, according to which the Taliban had pledged to stop anti-American terror activities in Afghanistan.
In this photograph taken on July 31, 2022, smoke rises from a house following a US drone strike in the Sherpur area of Kabul. US President Joe Biden announced on August 1 that Al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri had been killed by a drone strike in the Afghan capital. (Photo by AFP)
Following the US President's announcement of killing Ayman al-Zawahiri, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken accused the Taliban of "breaching the Doha agreement" by providing a safe haven for Ayman al-Zawahiri.
The house #AlQaeda leader was in when he was killed was owned by Mawli Hamza, director of Sirajuddin #Haqqani office and his right hand.— Mohammad Natiq (@natiqmalikzada) August 1, 2022
It is said that 12 Arabs related to Al Qaeda and several high-ranking officials of the #Taliban were also killed in this US drone attack. pic.twitter.com/Dy9NVnEcqv
A source in Kabul confirmed to me that the son and son-in-law of Taliban Interior Minister Sirajuddin Haqqani were also killed in the US airstrike in Kabul.— Shafi Karimi (@karimi_shafi) August 1, 2022
On the other hand, the Afghan government had earlier complained about a US airstrike, perceiving it as a "violation of the Doha agreement".
Despite the lack of official confirmation, many online people have shared photos of a building in the Afghan capital, Kabul, claiming it shows the house where Ayman al-Zawahiri spent his last few days before the US drone strike, saying it is owned by the current Afghan interior minister Sirajuddin Haqqani, who is one of the most prominent leaders of the Taliban.
Taliban was openly giving safe haven to the #AlQaeda in Afghanistan. The building in which #AlZawahiri was killed is owned by Most Wanted Terrorist Sirajuddin Haqqani who is the deputy leader of the Taliban and the ‘Interior Minister’. Some reports say Haqqani’s son also killed. pic.twitter.com/yJsWdjbyZf— Aditya Raj Kaul (@AdityaRajKaul) August 2, 2022
Moreover, some social media users shared unverified news of the killing of Sirajuddin Haqqani's son and son-in-law during the US airstrike, suggesting the Al-Qaeda Leader Ayman al-Zawahiri had a strong relationship with Taliban's Sirajuddin Haqqani and the current government in Afghanistan.
US officials also stated that Ayman al-Zawahiri had moved to Kabul in 2022, months after the Taliban's rise to power last August.
A num of media outlets based on the information of the National Security Hospital reports that Sirajuddin Haqqani's son and son-in-law, Ayman al-Zawahiri, were also killed in the US airstrike in Kabul. The Shirpur area of House Where attack happened belongs to Sirajuddin Haqqani— Nilofar Ayoubi (@NilofarAyoubi) August 1, 2022
As long as Sirajuddin Haqqani is allowed to roam freely, ties with the Taliban are being 'normalized', and armed resistance against terrorism in Afg is frowned upon, the US isn't delivering on anything. In fact, you are making the world a more dangerous place. https://t.co/nwzei15jzu— Eliza 💚🤍🖤 (@AstroNoodleCat) August 2, 2022
Meanwhile, many online people shared questions over the possible consequences of the US airstrike and whether or not it will be the beginning of a new confrontation between the US and the Taliban.
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