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Pakistan's ISI supports Taliban offensive: Afghan govt

News Agencies | Updated on: 31 July 2021, 9:02 IST
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Taliban have intensified their violent campaign across Afghanistan and their military offensive was supported by Pakistani notorious spy agency -- ISI, which was trying to align the terror group with Haqqani network and Al-Qaeda, said the Afghan Foreign Ministry.

While the Taliban seized over 193 district centres and 19 border districts, the Afghan National Defence and Security Forces (ANDSF) had recaptured nine district centres.

However, over 200 district centres remained out of the government's control, said the Afghan Ministry in a briefing on July 31.

The Taliban have also taken control of 10 border crossing points across the country in Takhar, Kunduz, Badakhshan, Herat and Farah provinces leading to the complete shutdown of cross border movements and trade in these areas.

The ministry further disclosed that since April 14, nearly 4000 ANDSF personnel had been killed, over 7,000 injured and about 1,600 captured by the Taliban. 2000 civilians, including women and children, had also died in the violence and another 2200 injured, reported InsideOver.

Pakistani terrorist groups, including Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Lashkar-e-Taiba, Lashkar Islam, Jaish-e-Mohammed, Jamaat ul Ahrar, Tanzim ul Badr and Lashkar Jangawi were fighting in Eastern provinces like Kunar, Nooristan and Nangarhar and were also fighting along with the Taliban and Haqqani network in Ghazani, Logar, Khost, Paktia, Kandahar, Zabul and Helmand provinces.

Pakistan military was reportedly assisting the Taliban in setting up training camps in Eastern provinces of Afghanistan and also in recruitment.

Afghan security forces assess that Al-Qaeda was supporting the Taliban by setting up training centres in Uruzgan province and trying to exploit the current situation to expand its base in Afghanistan.

Al-Qaeda and Haqqani network were also trying to increase their presence in Paktia province and establish a base for their fighters in Helmand province.

Earlier this month, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani too lambasted Pakistan for not severing its ties with terrorist organisations groups and said that according to intelligence reports over 10,000 'jihadi' fighters had entered Afghanistan in the last month.

He added that the Imran Khan-led Pakistan government had failed to convince the Taliban to "negotiate seriously" in the ongoing peace talks.

Recently, Afghan former intelligence chief Rahmatullah Nabil too said that at least 1,000 Pakistani terrorists enter into Afghanistan every day through the Spin Boldak border district, which was captured by the Taliban last week.

Afghan officials accused Pakistan of providing air support to the Taliban and threatening to hit back if Afghan forces try to retake the Spin Boldak border area.

Despite ample evidence that suggests the contrary, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has said that his country was neither "responsible" for the actions of the Taliban. "What the Taliban are doing or are not doing has nothing to do with us. We are neither responsible nor the spokesperson for the Taliban."

A UN report said that terrorists from a variety of countries and militant groups continue to operate in Afghanistan.

The 28th report of the UN Analytical Support and Sanctions Monitoring Team said that Pakistan-based terror group TTP has maintained ties with the Taliban as about 6,000 of its terrorists are on the Afghan side of the border


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First published: 31 July 2021, 9:01 IST