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Taliban’s quest for Islamist purity brought torture, beheadings, oppression

At their core, the Taliban are religious warriors — disciples of Islam. Their name means

“students” or “seekers of knowledge.” When they ruled, those who violated their interpretation of the Quran would be subject to public punishment such as whippings, stoning and beheadings. Despite two decades of war and tens of thousands of Taliban casualties, analysts say the Islamic regime remains as strong as before. And they are not moderate.

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