The Islamic State in ‘Khorasan Province’ issued a nearly 12 minute video on March 17 confirming the death of Mullah Abdul Rauf Khadim, the jihadist group’s former deputy governor for ‘Khorasan province.’ The video was translated by SITE Intelligence Group. Khadim, a former detainee at Gunatanamo Bay, was killed on Feb. 9 in a US airstrike; the US military confirmed his death.
The video included a short biography of Khadim, who was also known as Abu Talha al Khorasani, and accused the Afghan Taliban movement of “banning lessons in the creed of Islamic monotheism and Quranic interpretations.” The latter group ultimately stripped Khadim of his authority for preaching such doctrine; however, the Afghan Taliban movement allowed him to remain a field commander. Khadim ultimately switched allegiance to the Islamic State in January 2015.
Around halfway through the video, the ‘governor of Khorasan Province,’ former Movement of the Taliban in Pakistan (Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan or TTP) commander Hafez Saeed Khan, presents a speech entitled, “Sheikh Khadim is Gone and Revenge is Coming,” according to SITE. Khan vows to seek revenge for Khadim’s death and promises to teach the disbelievers “a lesson that they will not forget.”
The video also includes a few segments of Khadim, presumably in northern Helmand, firing what appears to be a well-used AK-47 with a GPU-25 grenade launcher. Khadim is also shown meeting with unidentified insurgents, along with a montage of the destroyed vehicle that Khadim was traveling in when it was destroyed by a US airstrike. A short segment also shows Khadim’s body being prepared for burial and his funeral ceremony.
Are you a dedicated reader of FDD's Long War Journal? Has our research benefitted you or your team over the years? Support our independent reporting and analysis today by considering a one-time or monthly donation. Thanks for reading! You can make a tax-deductible donation here.