The Afghan Taliban appointed Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansoor as the new leader to replace former Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar who passed away two years ago, the outfit said in a statement on Friday.
"Members of the leading council of the Islamic Emirate (the name of the ousted Taliban regime) ... in the wake of a prolonged discussion, decided in a meeting to appoint the intimate and trusted associate of Mullah Mohammad Omar Mujahid and the former deputy head of the Islamic Emirate, Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansoor, as the new leader of the Islamic Emirate," the statement posted in Taliban website reads.
The statement came as Abdul Qayoum Zakir, Taliban's military head, Mullah Habibullah, a member of Taliban Quetta Shura or council, and Sayed Tayib Agha, head of Taliban's political office in Gulf state of Qatar, were among those Taliban members who strongly disagreed the appointment of Mansour as the new leader to replace Omar, according to local media reports.
In the meeting of "leadership appointment, scholars, saints and dignitaries of the Islamic Emirate pledged their allegiance with Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansoor as Amir al-Muminin (Commander of the Faithful) in accordance with the principal of listening and obedience." according to the statement.
At the same meeting, the Taliban leading council had appointed Moulavi Haibatullah Akhunzada and Mullah Sirajuddin Haqqani as the deputy heads of the Islamic Emirate ofAfghanistan, the statement further said.
However, the statement did not reveal when and where the meeting was held.