Statement from Kunar-based Salafi Group on joining Taliban

Last week, the “Salafi Group,” a Taliban group based in Kunar, conducted an interview with Al Jazeera in which the group declared allegiance to Mullah Omar and the Afghan Taliban, and the group also released a propaganda tape showing the destruction of a US MRAP on a road in the province (the video from Al Jazeera is above). On Jan. 9, Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid released a statement formally announcing the Salafi Group’s merger with Mullah Omar’s Taliban. The entire statement is reproduced below:

The movement, Jama’at al-Daw’a ila al-Sunnah of Afghanistan which has regularly carried out Jihad in the name of Salafi Taliban in Kunar province, has now allied itself with the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, according to the report of our website reporter from the region.

The Council, consisting of the Deputy leader of this group, honorable Haji Hayaatullah and other senior members of the council, known as respected Sheikh Shawali, respected Maulawi Rahmatullah Khan, respected Maulawi Kalajan Jan, respected Maulawi Inayatu Rahman and others, have officially proclaimed allegiance to his highness Amir-ul- Momineen [the leader of the faithful, Mullah Mohammed Omar].

They declared cooperation and coordination with Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, vowing that all the Mujahideen of Kunar province will act in compliance with the Code of Conduct of the of the Islamic Emirate and follow its course of actions and that the Mujahideen of Kunar will carry out Jihad as per instructions of the Leadership of the Islamic Emirate in the same way as the other Mujahideen of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.

Last month, Hilal Salafi, a Taliban commander in the Pech Valley in Kunar, vowed to defeat US forces no matter how many reinforcements are sent.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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  • Civy says:

    Uh, that MRAP might need a new paint job, but its tires aren’t even flat. I doubt anyone inside got more than some ringing ears. Reports from Iraq indicate that even the earlier production versions withstood 130 kg charges with no fatalities. You notice how the camera conveniently cut away when the explosion occurred? I’m sure illiterate jihadists will be impressed, but this was a completely ineffective attack – unlike, for example, the many very effective attacks on Soviet wheeled vehicles which were gasoline powered, flat-bottomed, and slung low to the ground.
    I think it’s time we stop trembling every time these blowhards mumble into their beards and realize that more people were killed in Mexican drug wars last year than in Afghanistan in the last 3 years.

  • says:

    And here’s one other analyst’s take on it:
    “…. the move would have some political significance …. it would be the first non-Taleban insurgent group that would join the larger Taleban network that already the semi-autonomous networks of the Haqqani, the Mansur and the Khales families plus the Pakistani Taleban and al-Qaida’s Afghan chapter ….”


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