Taliban want peace, to respect women's rights under Islamic law
The Taliban held their first official news conference in Kabul on Tuesday since the shock seizure of the city, declaring they wanted peaceful relations with other countries and would respect the rights of women within the framework of Islamic law.
The Taliban in their first conference congratulated the Afghan people for being “emancipated” from 20 years of occupation, adding that “freedom and independence” was the legitimate right of every nation.
He said they wanted to take all onboard for forming the new government.
"We don't want any internal or external enemies," the movement's main spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, said.
Mujahid said women would be allowed to work and study and "will be very active in society but within the framework of Islam".
The Taliban would not seek retribution against former soldiers and members of the Western-backed government, he said, saying the movement was granting an amnesty for former Afghan government soldiers as well as contractors and translators who worked for international forces.
"Nobody is going to harm you, nobody is going to knock on your doors," he said.
He said private media could continue to be free and independent in Afghanistan, adding the Taliban was committed to the media within its cultural framework.
The Taliban held their first official news conference in Kabul since the shock seizure of the city, declaring on Tuesday they wished for peaceful relations with other countries.
“We don’t want any internal or external enemies,” the movement’s main spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, said.
The group previously declared an “amnesty” across Afghanistan and urged women to join its government, trying to calm nerves across a tense capital city that only the day before saw chaos at its airport as thousands mobbed the city’s international airport in a desperate attempt to flee.
Evacuation flights from Afghanistan resumed as a Western security official told the Reuters news agency on Tuesday that the Kabul airport’s tarmac and runway – which troops from the United States control – were now clear of crowds.
The Taliban have meanwhile declared the war in Afghanistan over and a senior leader said the group would wait until foreign forces had left before creating a new governance structure. China said it was ready for “friendly relations” with the Taliban, while Russia and Iran also made diplomatic overtures.
The Taliban spokesman has assured that the group wanted private media to “remain independent,” but stressed journalists “should not work against national values”.
The Taliban will not seek revenge against former soldiers and members of the Western-backed government, spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told reporters.
He said there was an amnesty for former Afghan government soldiers as well as contractors and translators who worked for international forces. “Nobody is going to harm you, nobody is going to knock on your doors,” he said.
Mujahid asserted that rights of women will be protected within the limits of Islamic law. “The women are going to be very active in the society, but within the framework of Islam,” he said in response to a question from an Al Jazeera correspondent.
Mujahid has asserted that no will be allowed to use Afghan territory for attacks against any nation. “I would like to ensure I would like to assure the international community, including the United States, that nobody will be harmed,” he said at the group’s first press conference in Kabul.
“In Afghanistan, I would like to assure our neighbours, our original countries we are not going to allow our territory to be used against anybody or any country in the world. So the whole global community should be assured that we are committed to these pleasures that you will not be harmed.”