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Taliban leader speaks in Cologne's Ditib Mosque

In the middle of Germany: A high-ranking Taliban official gives a speech in Cologne and is celebrated by his compatriots. The organizer is the Turkish mosque association Ditib.

Cologne - A high-ranking official in the Taliban government in Afghanistan spoke to his Afghan compatriots in Cologne about his government's successes. The head of the Food and Drug Administration, Abdul Bari Omar, defended the regime and urged his listeners to pay attention to "the Taliban's actual successes" and to ignore the press.

As pictures and video recordings by an official Islamist government spokesman on X show, his speech was applauded. He was hugged and photos were taken together. Some listeners were said to have responded by shouting “Allahu Akbar,” Afghanistan International reported. The event was held at a facility run by Ditib – the largest Islamic association in Germany. The Ditib is subordinate to the Turkish religious authority in Ankara. It is unclear when the event took place. The recordings have been circulating on social networks since Friday.

Taliban calls for return
Omar assured that “security in the country is guaranteed and the reconstruction process is underway.” The former deputy health minister called on the audience to now “contribute to the development of the country and use our money for the development of the country.”

Before his appearance, Omar, as head of the Food and Drug Administration, attended an international conference in The Hague. “At the invitation of an Afghan cultural activist” he made a stopover in Germany.

The Taliban have been in power since NATO forces withdrew from Afghanistan. Since then, tens of thousands of Afghans have been fleeing to Germany . The Taliban are not banned in Germany.

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