The commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan has accused the Taliban's reclusive leader of issuing a "message of hate and hopelessness" to mark the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr.
General John Allen said Friday Mullah Omar's message focused on insurgent operations, revenge, death and lies. Allen said the faithful expect a message of congratulations at the end of Ramadan.
The NATO commander said just recently, during attacks in Nimroz and Kunduz, Mullah Omar sent "assassins" to kill dozens of innocent Afghan men, women and children. Omar is reported to live in Pakistan.
In his statement, the Taliban leader accused American forces of killing innocent civilians and desecrating their corpses. He urged Afghans to join the Taliban and told his fighter to "be careful about civilian losses."
Omar also boasted that his fighters have successfully infiltrated Afghan security forces to mount rogue shootings of foreign troops.
The Taliban leader said his group has not abandoned its goals in peace negotiations. He said the aim is to secure an exchange of prisoners and the opening of a political office, and noted that the Taliban suspended talks earlier this year.
International combat forces are in the process of completely withdrawing from Afghanistan by the end of 2014 and transferring security responsibility to their Afghan counterparts. In his statement, Omar said the transition of authority to what he called "the Kabul powerless administration" is a sign of defeat.