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Mohammed Omar

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Mohammed Omar
ملا محمد عمر
Former Head of the Supreme Council of Afghanistan
In office
27 September 1996 – 13 November 2001
Prime Minister Mohammad Rabbani
Abdul Kabir (Acting)
Preceded by Burhanuddin Rabbani (President of Afghanistan)
Succeeded by Burhanuddin Rabbani (President of Afghanistan)
Personal details
Born 1959
Nodeh, Afghanistan
Political party Islamic and National Revolution Movement of Afghanistan
Religion Khawarij Sect of Islam
Military service
Battles/wars Soviet-Afghan War
Civil war in Afghanistan
War in North-West Pakistan
Mullah Mohammed Omar (Pashto: ملا محمد عمر) is the leader of the Taliban in Afghanistan. His name is often shortened to Mullah Omar. Between 1996 and 2001, he was Afghanistan's de facto head of state. Three states officially recognised him under the title of Head of the Supreme Council. He was born around the year 1959 in Nodeh, near Kandahar.[1] He held the title Commander of the Faithful from the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.

The United States has put him on their most wanted list. They believe he sheltered Osama bin Laden, and some of his al Quaeda group, directly before and after they supposedly committed the September 11 attacks.[2] He is believed to be directing the Taliban in their war against Hamid Karzai's Government and foreign NATO troops in Afghanistan from Pakistan.[3] Many people everywhere around the world, Muslims and others, consider him to be a major terrorist, too.

Despite his political rank, and his high status on the FBI's wanted list,[2] not much is publicly known about Omar. There are very few photos of him. None of these photos is official. A picture that was used by the media in 2002, shows another Taliban official, but not Omar. It is also debated how authoritative the images that exist really are.[4]

Omar seems to be missing one eye. Other than this, people have described him in different ways: Some who have met him say he is tall,[5][6] others describe him as small and frail.[4] He has been described as shy and untalkative with foreigners.[4][7]

When he was Emir of Afghanistan, Omar stayed in Kandahar most of the time and rarely met outsiders.[5] He sent his Foreign Minister, Wakil Ahmed Muttawakil, to represent him, on most occasions.

News media have claimed that he was killed by a drone strike in 2008.[8]

In 2012, it was revealed that an individual claiming to be Omar sent a letter to President Barack Obama in 2011, expressing slight interest in peace talks.[9][10]


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