Burial site of Taliban founder Mullah Omar is revealed 9 years after death
Mullah Omar, the man who founded Taliban, died in 2013 and now the movement has revealed his final resting place. His death and burial had been kept a secret for years. After the Taliban was ousted from power in 2001 following a US-led invasion, no one knew where Omar was. The Taliban only admitted in April 2015 that he had died two years earlier.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told AFP Sunday that senior leaders attended a ceremony at his gravesite earlier in the day near Omarzo, in Suri district of Zabul province.
"Since a lot of enemies were around and the country was occupied, to avoid damage to the tomb it was kept secret," Mujahid said.
"Only the close family members were aware of the place," he added.
Officials released pictures of the burial site which appears like a simple white brick tomb, covered with gravel and enclosed in a green metal cage.
"Now the decision has been made... there are no issues for the people to visit the tomb," Mujahid said.
The Taliban returned to power in August last year. It managed a quick takeover, with forces sweeping aside government forces. The US-led military that backed the regime left the country after 20 years, while President Ashraf Ghani fled and had to take refuge in the UAE.
Omar founded the Taliban in 1993 following the decade-long Soviet occupation which had led to a civil war. He died aged 55.
Under his leadership the Taliban introduced an extremely austere version of Islamic rule. It comprised several restriction on especially women who were barred from public life. Harsh public punishments, including executions and floggings, also became the norm under the regime.