Islamic State gaining ground in Afghanistan: UN

Published September 26, 2015
"The number of groups and individuals who are openly declaring either loyalty to or sympathy with ISIL continues to grow in a number of provinces in Afghanistan." — AFP/File
"The number of groups and individuals who are openly declaring either loyalty to or sympathy with ISIL continues to grow in a number of provinces in Afghanistan." — AFP/File

UNITED NATIONS: The self-styled Islamic State (IS) group is making inroads in Afghanistan, winning over a growing number of sympathisers and recruiting followers in 25 of the country's 34 provinces, a United Nations (UN) report said Friday.

The jihadist group, which controls large areas of Syria and Iraq, has been trying to establish itself in Afghanistan, challenging the Taliban on their own turf.

Afghan security forces told UN sanctions monitors that about 10 percent of the Taliban insurgency are IS sympathisers, according to the report by the UN's Al Qaeda monitoring team.

"The number of groups and individuals who are openly declaring either loyalty to or sympathy with ISIL continues to grow in a number of provinces in Afghanistan," said the report.

Afghan government sources said "sightings of the groups with some form of ISIL branding" or sympathy were reported in 25 provinces in the war-torn country, it added.

The IS-backed groups "regularly engage" Afghan military forces, but fighting with other parts of the insurgency are rare, except in Nangarhar province where they are battling the Taliban for control of the drug trade.

Among the prominent IS fighters, the report singled out Abdul Rauf Khadem, a former Taliban adviser to Mullah Omar, who visited Iraq in October 2014 and has since formed his own group in Helmand and Farah provinces.

Khadem allegedly has been recruiting followers by paying out large sums of money.

Opinion

Editorial

Price bombs
Updated 18 Jun, 2024

Price bombs

It just wants to take the easy route and enjoy the ride for however long it is in power.
Palestine’s plight
Updated 17 Jun, 2024

Palestine’s plight

While the faithful across the world are celebrating with their families, thousands of Palestinian children have either been orphaned, or themselves been killed by the Israeli aggressors.
Profiting off denied visas
17 Jun, 2024

Profiting off denied visas

IT is no secret that visa applications to the UK and Schengen countries come at a high cost. But recent published...
After the deluge
Updated 16 Jun, 2024

After the deluge

There was a lack of mental fortitude in the loss against India while against US, the team lost all control and displayed a lack of cohesion and synergy.
Fugue state
16 Jun, 2024

Fugue state

WITH its founder in jail these days, it seems nearly impossible to figure out what the PTI actually wants. On one...
Sindh budget
16 Jun, 2024

Sindh budget

SINDH’S Rs3.06tr budget for the upcoming financial year is a combination of populist interventions, attempts to...