Taliban fighters take over Afghan warlord’s glitzy mansion – Times of India

KABUL: Taliban fighters have taken over the glitzy Kabul mansion of one of their fiercest enemies — the warlord and fugitive former vice-president Abdul Rashid Dostum.
Now within the arms of rank and file Taliban fighters, the opulent villa has given the austere fundamentalists a peek into the lives of Afghanistan’s former rulers, and so they say the posh is the proceeds of years of endemic corruption.
Along a hall with a thick apple-inexperienced carpet, a fighter sleeps slumped on a settee, his Kalashnikov rifle resting in opposition to him, as unique fish glide above him in a single of seven big tanks. The fighter is an element of the non-public safety element of Qari Salahuddin Ayoubi — one of the brand new regime’s strongest commanders — who put in his firm of 150 males within the mansion on August 15, the day Kabul fell. The luxurious of the mansion could be unimaginable for many bizarre Afghans. Huge glass chandeliers dangle in giant halls, smooth sofas furnish a maze of lounges and an indoor swimming pool is completed with intricate turquoise tiles. It even boasts a sauna and a completely outfitted fitness center.
It is an out of this world expertise for the brand new occupants, who for years sacrificed creature comforts for rise up — dwelling on their wits within the plains, valleys and mountains of rural Afghanistan.
But the brand new head of the family — now the navy commander of 4 provinces — makes it clear his males is not going to get used to the posh.
“Islam never wants us to have a luxurious life,” Ayoub mentioned, including luxurious is available in paradise, “the life after death”.
A infamous determine in Afghanistan’s current historical past, the mansion’s proprietor, Dostum, is extensively suspected to have profited from the corruption and embezzlement that discredited the previous authorities. When Kabul fell, his stronghold was overrun and the 67-yr-outdated fled to Uzbekistan.
The Taliban have good motive to hate Dostum. In 2001, he was accused of killing over 2,000 fighters — locking many in containers within the center of the desert the place they suffocated. But commander Ayoubi rejected any need for revenge. “If other people who had been oppressed like us came here, you would not have seen the chairs and tables. They might have destroyed them,” he mentioned.

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