Taliban reportedly working on ‘constitution’

Supreme Court compound in Kabul. August 2022. File photo.

The Taliban is presently engaged in drafting a “constitution,” with the process being overseen by their supreme court judge, Abdul Hakim Haqqani, according to a report by the Taliban-run Bakhtar News Agency.

“Under the guidance of Sheikh Abdul Hakim Haqqani, the Supreme Court Judge, work on the ‘constitution’ is currently in progress,” the report stated, without attributing the statement to any specific Taliban official.

Since the fall of the republic government in August 2021, the Taliban has been in control without a formal legal framework in place, as a constitution has not been established.

Details regarding the content of the Taliban’s constitution have not yet been shared with the media and the public.

Questions arise about the fate of the constitution drafted during the previous government.

“The attempt by the ruling group to draft a constitution is appreciable given that they consult with the people of Afghanistan and partially engage the international community,” noted Subhan Musbah, a legal analyst.

The Taliban’s governance has faced criticism in the absence of a constitution, with allegations of arbitrary detentions, administrative mismanagement, and mistreatment of the public.

“A group that has assumed power through unconventional means, nullifying existing laws, lacks the authority to draft a constitution and other laws. The constitution should be based on a legal framework, reflecting the will of the people and enacted by their elected representatives,” argued Ghulam Farooq Alim, a lawyer.

During their previous rule over Afghanistan in the 1990s, the Taliban also operated without a constitution in place.

However, it remains unclear which specific provisions will be included in the Taliban’s proposed constitution, as their isolated government has thus far enforced repressive policies, provoking outrage among both Afghan citizens and the international community.