Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, former head of the Taliban political office who was named deputy prime minister last week, is alive said the Taliban, releasing his audio message, according to Reuters.

There were rumours of his death in a shootout with rivals, following reports of internal splits in the movement.

Taliban spokesman Sulail Shaheen, tweeted, Mullah Bradar has released a voice message and rejecting all the claims of him being injured or killed in a clash. He says "it is lies and totally baseless."

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The Taliban also released video footage purportedly showing Baradar at meetings in the southern city of Kandahar. Reuters could not immediately verify the footage.

This comes after rumours that supporters of Baradar had clashed with those of Sirajuddin Haqqani, head of the Haqqani network that is based near the border with Pakistan and was blamed for some of the worst suicide attacks of the war.

Rumours of possible rivalries between military commanders like Haqqani and leaders from the political office in Doha like Baradar, who led diplomatic efforts to reach a settlement with the United States, were doing rounds in past few days. But, the Taliban have repeatedly denied the speculations.

Baradar was seen as the head of a Taliban government, but he was elected as Deputy PM. He has not been seen in public for some time. He was also not part of the ministerial delegation that met Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani in Kabul on Sunday.

The Taliban took over Afghanistan last month, weeks before the US troops completely withdrew from the country after two decades. The Afghan government fell after the takeover and former president Ashraf Ghani also fled the country. Thousands of Afghans are trying to flee the country, fearing strict Islamic laws.