Taliban denies Al-Qaeda presence in Afghanistan

The Taliban has denied any presence of Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and said the group will not allow anyone, “including Al-Qaeda,” to “exploit” and use Afghanistan’s territory against any nation

Nov 05, 2020
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The Taliban has denied any presence of Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and said the group will not allow anyone, “including Al-Qaeda,” to “exploit” and use Afghanistan’s territory against any nation.   

The statement came around a week after the Afghan National Directorate of Security (NDS) forces killed a high ranking senior Al-Qaeda leader, Abu Mohsin Al Misri, in Andar district of Ghazni province. Interestingly, Andar district has been under the full control of the insurgent group since 2018. 

In an interview with an Afghan media, TOLOnews, Dr Muhammad Naeem, the spokesperson of the Taliban’s Doha office, wrote, “Right now, there is no Al Qaeda presence in Afghanistan.” He also questioned the Afghan government’s stand of not accepting the US-Taliban deal, signed on 29 February of this year, as the basis for the talk. 

The timing of the Taliban denial of Al-Qaeda’s presence in Afghanistan isn’t a coincidence with the US election is to over in days, mounting criticism over rising violence, and hardening tone of the US special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad.  

“They should clearly say it if they do not accept the agreement between the United States and the Islamic emirate,” Dr Naeem was quoted as saying by TOLOnews.

On the Kabul University attack, he called the attempts to link up the group with the attack as a “conspiracy of Kabul Administration (the Afghan government)” to defame the insurgent group.

Blaming the Afghan government for rising violence in the country, the Taliban spokesperson said the increasing operations by the Afghan National security forces against the freed Taliban prisoners is the “root cause” behind it. 
 
On Daesh (ISKP) in Afghanistan, the Taliban accused some intelligence agencies and countries in the region of supporting the ISKP, but he refused to name anyone.

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