Over 1,000 Hazaras have pledged their support for the interim Taliban government, saying that the "dark period" of previous Western-backed governments has ended.
Afghanistan's Hazaras and Shiite Muslims have been persecuted by the Taliban, but on Thursday, community elders gathered in Kabul alongside Taliban leaders in a show of support.
Senior Hazara leader and former lawmaker Jafar Mahdawi, who organized the gathering, said the former President Ashraf Ghani was the "darkest point" in the history of Afghanistan.
"Afghanistan had no independence and (foreign) embassies ruled every aspect of the government," he said. "Thank God, we have now passed this dark period."
Since the Taliban seized power in August, the new rulers have put an end to the war, ended corruption and increased security, Mahdawi said.
He, however, called for a more inclusive government from the Taliban and urged the new rulers to reopen schools for girls.
"In the coming weeks or months, we hope to witness an inclusive government that has representatives of all people," Mahdawi said.
The interim Taliban government is made up almost entirely of the group's Pashtun stalwarts and includes no women.
Taliban leader and spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid told the gathering that rebuilding the country was a priority. He said their struggle against the "foreign invaders" has ended and that the intention is to rebuild the country.
The Hazaras, roughly 10% to 20% of Afghanistan's around 38 million population, have been persecuted for centuries in the country.
In the last two decades, they have been targeted in particular by the Taliban and Daesh terrorists, who consider them heretics.
The Taliban has carried out several mass killings of Hazaras, including in the city of Mazar-i-Sharif in 1998, where Human Rights Watch says at least 2,000 mainly Hazara civilians were executed.
Several bomb attacks in recent years have also killed and wounded several Hazaras in Kabul and other cities.
Just days after the Taliban took over, a statue of a prominent Hazara political leader was decapitated in Bamiyan, a city inhabited mainly by the Shiite community.
Nobody claimed responsibility for the act, but the Taliban earned notoriety in 2001 for destroying two giant Buddha statues in Bamiyan after deeming them anti-Islamic.
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