Daesh trying to infiltrate more areas in east: MP
JALALABAD (Pajhwok): An influential figure in eastern Afghanistan on Tuesday said the Islamic State or Daesh group was trying to expand its ranks and infiltrate more areas.
Lawmaker Hazrat Ali told reporters on the sidelines of a gathering of tribal elders in Jalalabad, the capital of eastern Nangarhar province, that they were concerned that the Daesh group remained active and was trying to find a foothold in Nuristan and Kunar provinces.
The former jihadi leader said: “According to my information, Daesh has regrouped in the Shinwari zone and has extended its activities to Kunar and Nuristan.”
He said the militant outfit was planning to capture highways and extend their presence to other areas. “The group has intensified its efforts at recruiting and its foreign financial sources have increased.”
A civil society activist, Abdul Rahman Moawin, who attended the gathering, said the gathering participants expressed their concern over the increasing strength of armed militants.
He said the Islamic State fighters were still operating in some areas and the government should take action against them.
Nangarhar provincial council member Sohrab Qaderi said tribal elders and common people were urged through the gathering to increase their cooperation with the government in maintaining security. He hoped the government would launch massive operations against militants.
But the Nangarhar governor’s spokesman, Attaullah Khogyani, told Pajhowk Afghan News that the Islamic State had been weakened in the Shinwari zone.
“It is a known fact that the insurgents increase their activities in summer, but the provincial administration is serious about it and has in advance launched operations in the Shinwari and Khogyani zones.”
Last week, senior provincial security officials told a press conference that hundreds of militants had been killed and activities of the Islamic State confined to a few areas during the past one year.
Speaking at that press conference, Nangarhar police chief Brig. Gen. Fazl Ahmad Sherzad said they had chalked out plans for operations in summer, asking people to trust the national security forces.
The Daesh and Taliban have so far said nothing in this regard.
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