Al Qaeda 'operates in Afghanistan under the flag of the Islamic Emirate': Taliban spokesman


A Taliban spokesman who identified himself as an "Authorized Correspondent by the Media Committee of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan" said that the Taliban will not renounce al Qaeda and that the terror group operates under the command of the "Military Command of the Islamic Emirate."

The Taliban official, Abdullah al Wazir, made the statement yesterday in response to a posting at Shumukh al Islam, a jihadist Internet forum linked to al Qaeda. Wazir was replying to a question from a forum member who thought "that by agreeing to negotiations with the United States, the Afghan Taliban has taken the 'first step' to abandon al Qaeda," said the SITE Intelligence Group, which translated the statement.

"They [al Qaeda] are among the first groups and banners that pledged allegiance to the Emir of the Believers [Mullah Omar, the leader of the Afghan Taliban], and they operate in Afghanistan under the flag of the Islamic Emirate," Wazir said.

"They are an example of discipline and accuracy in the execution of missions and operations entrusted to them by the Military Command of the Islamic Emirate," Wazir continued, calling al Qaeda "lions in war."

Wazir said he was an "Authorized Correspondent by the Media Committee of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan." SITE described Wazir as "the "Afghan Taliban's correspondent on jihadist forums."

A US intelligence official who follows the Taliban said that Wazir is a member of the Haqqani Network, the powerful Taliban sub-group that operates in eastern Afghanistan and in Pakistan's tribal areas. The Haqqanis are closely tied to al Qaeda; Siraj Haqqani, the network's operational commander, has a seat on al Qaeda's council, and he and five other members of the network have been added to the US's list of Specially Designated Global Terrorists for their close ties to al Qaeda.

The Haqqanis routinely conduct join operations with al Qaeda in eastern Afghanistan, and provide shelter, support, and training facilities to leaders and operatives in Pakistan's Taliban-controlled tribal agency of North Waziristan.

Last fall, Siraj released a training manual which included portions that praised al Qaeda and urged Haqqani Network members to support al Qaeda both locally and in its international operations.

Wazir's statement was made just two days after the Taliban released an interview with Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, by CNN. During the interview, Mujahid refused to renounce "international terrorism" or al Qaeda. Mujahid also insisted that as an initial "confidence building measure" the US must take steps including the "exchange of Guantanamo prisoners." The five Taliban detainees currently under discussion all have been instrumental in forging ties between the Taliban and al Qaeda.



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READER COMMENTS: "Al Qaeda 'operates in Afghanistan under the flag of the Islamic Emirate': Taliban spokesman"

Posted by Bug Splat at February 18, 2012 3:55 AM ET:

So the Afghan Taliban say:

a) They won't negotiate with the Afghan government.

b) But they will negotiate with the US/NATO to facilitate a withdrawal of the latter's forces.

c) And al-Qaeda is under the flag of the Islamic Emirate aka Taliban.

Which means, quite simply, that the Afghan Taliban's only serious enemy is the US/NATO and that al-Qaeda will always have a safe haven in Afghanistan with the Taliban.

What's more, everyone in Afghanistan knows this. Do the politicians in the White House?

Posted by mike merlo at February 18, 2012 12:10 PM ET:

All that being said how does that make the Obama Administration look when they're busy forcing Karazi's 'hand' to accept the Taliban at face value. And still no word on SPC Bergdahl. Hopefully Karazi has the presence of self to stand down the Obama Administration.

Posted by Warlord at February 18, 2012 12:20 PM ET:

Before any further discussion of releasing the prisoners
held at Gitmo, there is the matter of our prisoner of war
Bowe Bergdahl. Should the Taliban not produce him in fine working order, they can forget the release of any prisoners ever. In fact, head removal comes to mind.

Posted by Devin Leonard at February 18, 2012 4:25 PM ET:

The Haqqanni network time and again is the main obstacle to any form of peace (also the Pakis and ISI) Since we can't kill the Pakis or ISI (unfortunately) We need to keep using Spec Ops night raids and Drone attacks to kill Haqqanni leaders. Of course they are all in Pakistan so that presents a problem. Obama needs to pull the plug on aid untill they cough up these maggots or we need to simply cross the border and kill them...Obama needs to make the choice.

Posted by Tmal at February 18, 2012 4:56 PM ET:

Kill them all.

Posted by Ruslan at February 20, 2012 3:32 AM ET:

February 15 was held on the anniversary of the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan. Against this background, I decided to write to your kids. Those who are on the front line - keep the guys and do not listen to the freaks who pytayutsya spit you go. You soldiers and heroes. caused a shock - the soldiers pee on the corpses of Taliban - my God, what kind of horror, and the fact that the corpses had the habit of cutting off the head and genitals soldiers forgot to tell the journalist. Gentlemen - this is war, not a Hollywood movie and there is no way to snot just do not survive.
Those who are screaming about the "Taliban casualties" and beasts soldiers - why do you drove them back? Why do not you shout at the White House, not screaming then?
You probably know how to quickly do a better job so go and make disciples of the Taliban - they will be glad of another bad head, which separate the fun from the body.

Posted by Mary at February 20, 2012 11:31 PM ET:

The Muslim Brotherhood's global jihad picked off our troops for over ten years, all the while conquering the oil-rich countries of Africa in genocidal jihad. Leftist (supremacist) elitists made deals to keep the violence overseas, but do they really think they will be spared jizya (tribute of up to 50 percent of one's wealth)? The communists enabled Islamic takeover in Iran and then were killed as soon as Iran became a Muslim country. Do they think they will be spared? If they do, they really are more arrogant than intelligent.