Taliban leaders once held Pakistani IDs, passports exposed, former spy chief says

Former intelligence chief of Afghanistan, Rahmatullah Nabil disclosed that all Taliban leaders once possessed Pakistani identity cards and passports with fake names, following recent reports about the Taliban’s acting interior minister, Sirajuddin Haqqani, holding a Pakistani passport for five years.

Nabil informed Amu that a specialized department was established in Pakistan’s National Database and Registration Authority to maintain the confidentiality of this information.

“Pakistan represents a 40-year investment for the Taliban or the Haqqani family, who are unlikely to relinquish it easily or soon,” Nabil asserted. He further stated, “The apparent rifts between the Taliban and Pakistan aim to portray the Taliban as independent, seeking legitimacy and internal support.”

Disputing reports of Haqqani’s travel to Qatar, journalist Tahir Khan reached out to Sohail Shaheen in the Taliban’s political office in Qatar, who strongly denied the claim, citing the challenges of business travel during wartime.

Citing official sources, The News and Geo News reported on Wednesday that Haqqani held a Pakistani passport for five years, facilitating his travel abroad, particularly to Qatar for negotiations with the United States and the signing of the Doha Agreement leading to the withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Contrary to the reports, a Pakistani journalist, Umar Cheema, mentioned that Haqqani’s passport had been blocked, indicating that it was used primarily for travel to Doha. Cheema noted that the incident highlighted the issuance of Pakistani passports to 30,000 to 40,000 Afghans from various regions.

The Taliban has not officially responded to the report, although some pro-Taliban users on X dismissed it as baseless. Pro-Taliban figure Mohammad Jalal cited the case of Anas Haqqani’s arrest in 2014 as evidence, questioning how Siraj Haqqani could have traveled given the circumstances.

This comes amid evolving relations between the Taliban and Pakistan over the past two years.