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Former Taliban Official 'Addicted' to His iPhone

The Taliban are well known for banning music, movies and all sorts of modern conveniences — but that may not to apply to iPhones.

Al Jazeera English reporter Hamish Macdonald was astonished earlier this month when he sat down for an interview with a former Taliban official — who promptly whipped out his iPhone.

"I'm addicted," reportedly said Mullah Abdul Salam Zaeef, who was the Taliban ambassador to Pakistan until late 2001. "The Internet is great on this — very fast."

Macdonald says on his official blog that Zaeef then showed him and his film crew his favorite Web sites.

"I half expected him to log on and show us 'Taliban Twitter,'" writes Macdonald.

Zaeef became well known on Western television during the interim period between the Sept. 11 attacks and the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan.

He held multiple news conferences in which he both condemned the terrorist attacks and insisted that Usama bin Laden, then a guest of the Taliban, was not responsible.

He then spent more than three years in U.S. custody, including significant time at the Guantanamo Bay detention camp, before being freed in 2005.

Zaeef now serves as a go-between between the more moderate elements of the Taliban and the Afghan government and its allies.

Macdonald says he lives in comfortable house arrest outside Kabul.

• Click here to read Macdonald's blog posting, including a priceless photo of Zaeef using his iPhone.

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