The Islamic State’s Wilayah Khorasan is the latest province of the so-called caliphate to release a video as part of the “And the Best Outcome is for the Righteous” series. Fighters in Afghanistan, India, Iran, Kashmir, and Pakistan are shown renewing their oaths of allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. One speaker blasts the Taliban, encouraging its fighters to defect.
An Islamic State suicide bomber struck outside the Marshal Fahim National Defense University in Kabul earlier today. It is the second time the so-called Khorasan province has attacked the academy. According to UNAMA, the jihadists launch more “suicide and complex attacks” in the Afghan capital than in any other area of the country.
An 18-year-old man from North Texas has pleaded guilty to charges that he conspired to actively recruit for the Pakistani-backed terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), according to a release from the Department of Justice last week.
On May 14, the UN Security Council added the Islamic State’s so-called Khorasan province to its list of sanctioned terrorist entities. The group has recently rebranded operations in Kashmir and Pakistan as the work of supposedly new “provinces.”
A small team of Islamic State jihadists assaulted the Ministry of Communications in Kabul on Apr. 20. It was the latest in a string of attacks on government ministries and other official sites in the Afghan capital.
Earlier today, the Islamic State’s Khorasan “province” attacked a memorial held in honor of Abdul Ali Mazari, an ethnic Hazara leader who was killed by the Taliban in 1995. The Islamic State’s loyalists frequently target Shiites in the Afghan capital.
According to the UN’s Jan. 2019 assessment, al Qaeda’s relationship with the Taliban is “long-standing” and “strong.” And al Qaeda “continues to see Afghanistan as a safe haven for its leadership.” The UN estimates that the Islamic State has several thousand fighters in Afghanistan as well.
According to UNAMA’s annual report for 2018, more civilians were killed in Afghanistan than in any year since 2009. The Taliban remains the main culprit when it comes to civilian casualties, killing or wounding more than any other party. But the number casualties attributed to the Islamic State’s branch more than doubled in 2018, as compared to 2017.