How foreign members of IS make their way to Afghanistan?
Nearly 45 days after surrender of over 1,500 members of the
Islamic State – Khurasan Province (ISKP), sources from the National Directorate
of Security (NDS) told Kabul Now that 439 members of the terrorist group are
currently under interrogation in the NDS detention centers in Kabul.
These ISKP members have surrendered to the Afghan national
defense and security forces in the last one and half month—as the result of
intensified airstrikes and military operation against the terrorist group.
Children and foreign nationals
Of the 439 members of the ISKP who are under the custody of
the NDS, only 162 fighters are Afghan nationals who are all above the age 18.
277 members of the terrorist group are foreign nationals—from
Pakistan, Iran, India, Jordan, China, and Central
Asian countries. Of these foreign nationals, 43 are men, 75 are women, and 159
others are children. Most of the children and women are family members of the
arrested ISKP fighters.
According to the NDS officials, majority
of the children are between 1-12 years old.
How foreign nationals
entered to Afghanistan?
Some of the ISKP members say they have
made their way to Afghanistan after obtaining Afghan identity card, Tazkira, by
ISKP members who were operating in Afghanistan.
Amin Delneshin, who is from Urmia city of Azerbaijan province in Iran, has joined the ISKP in Afghanistan. He told Kabul Now that he was recruited along with nine other Iranian nationals to the ISKP by an IS recruitment officer in Iran named Abu Ahmad around five months ago.
As he detailed, the ISKP members have
provided the Iranian nationals with Afghan Tazkiras and then they were moved to
the western Nimroz province of Afghanistan.
“We were nine people at the beginning.
Then, three of us regretted and did not join Daesh leaving us just six people.
Four of us had moved to Afghanistan before me and my friends,” says Mr.
Delneshin. “I and two of my friends came to Nimroz with Afghan national
Delneshin and his friend were taken to
Kabul and Nangarhar by another member of the terrorist group from Nimroz
province. Delneshin was recruited to supply food, munitions, and equipment for
fighters of the group in Achin district of Nangarhar.
He decided to surrender to the Afghan
forces after his friend was killed as the result of a foreign airstrike in the
The surrendered Iranian ISKP member
says he had joined the terrorist group through a Telegram channel after
receiving promises to have high salary. “I was told that they will pay me as
much money that it would be sufficient for my future expenses as well. But I
was just paid 10,000 Pakistani rupees over that five months,” Delneshin said.
He noted that other promises of the
group were never met.
Khadija has joined the ISKP in
Nangarhar along with her husband from Waziristan, in northern Pakistan, around
four years ago. She is now under the NDS custody with her four children.
She, however, does not know about
whereabouts of her husband due to restrictions in the detention centers and
separation of male and female detainees. “There are just my four children with
me. I do not know about whereabouts of my husband who was a warrior and
surrendered,” she says, urging the Afghan government to release her and all her
Maria, 32, is from Gujarat state of
India who has joined the ISKP in Nangarhar along with her husband after
entering in Afghanistan. Maria’s husband had been recruited by one of his
friends to ISKP around four years ago in India.
Mariam, another Pakistani citizen, has
joined the terrorist group along with her husband four years ago. As she
stated, they were forced to leave Narwal in Punjab of Pakistan after their
marriage which was made in contradiction to the ruling local norms and
Both; the wife and husband, are
imprisoned by the ISKP and then arrested by Afghan forces in a military
operation on the ISKP hideout.
ISKP defeat in Nangarhar
To defeat the ISKP in Nangarhar, Afghan
forces launched a massive operation against the terrorist group around three
months ago in Nangarhar and Kunar provinces. Deputy spokesperson for the
Ministry of Defense, Fawad Aman, told Kabul Now a month after the operation was
launched that the ISKP was completely defeated in eastern Afghanistan. “They do
not have even the capability to fire a single bullet against government
forces,” he claimed.
He added that most of the ISKP members
had surrendered to Afghan forces in Achin district of the province and all
strongholds of the terrorist group were destroyed in the district.
The deputy spokesperson further noted that
the ISKP members were forced to surrender after airstrikes and military
operations intensified against the terrorists.
Meanwhile, the Taliban have claimed
that the Afghan forces rescued ISKP terrorists after the Taliban militants had
besieged them as the result of their operation in Nangarhar and other
Although the Afghan government reject
any role of the Taliban in the defeat of the ISKP, US Special Representative
for Afghanistan Reconciliation, Zalmay Khalilzad, acknowledged in a tweet
posted on December 04 that the Taliban had role in defeating the ISKP.
“Effective operations by US/Coalition
and Afghan security forces, as well as the Taliban, led to ISIS-K losing
territory and fighters,” parts of his tweet reads.
Describing the defeat as a big
achievement for Afghanistan and the region, President Ghani congratulated the
victory for Afghan security forces on November 19.