Conflicting Reports on Taliban Leader’s Status Highlight Fraying Unity

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KABUL, Afghanistan — A day after reports began surfacing that the Taliban’s supreme leader may have been wounded or killed in a dispute, a scramble by the insurgents to deny the reports again illuminated the group’s fraying unity and recent history of lying about their leaders’ health.
Afghan government officials claimed on Wednesday that the Taliban leader, Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour, had been shot in a tense meeting of his commanders in the suburbs of the Pakistani city of Quetta. Those claims could not be independently verified, and the government has gotten such reports wrong before.