The Taliban has been chastised for putting some notoriously shady figures in charge of Afghanistan's interim government, none more so than Sirajuddin Haqqani, a designated terrorist last seen hiding behind a plant.
On October 19, in his first public appearance since being named the Taliban's interior minister in early September, Haqqani praised suicide bombers and promised money and land to their surviving family members in a packed house.
Haqqani can barely be seen sitting behind a strategically placed floral arrangement onstage in an official photo of the event at Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel, which was the target of deadly Taliban attacks in 2011 and 2018. Despite the obvious attempt to conceal Haqqani's identity, a closer look reveals the clearest image of Haqqani's face seen in recent years.
Another camera angle clearly reveals the event's decorations, VIPs, and Taliban special-forces troops wielding recently stolen US military gear. Except for Haqqani, whose body is visible but whose face has been completely removed from the scene, according to the report.