ISIS first declared their Islamic State in Afghanistan and Pakistan on 26 January this year when rebelling Taliban commanders swore allegiance to leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
A witness said the Taliban have raised a flag over the city’s main square, while a police official confirmed the raiders had captured more than half the city.
The State Department official said the potential IS threat in Afghanistan was something that the US was factoring into how it engaged with the country and supported Afghanistan’s efforts to improve security and stability. The attack took place in southeastern Paktika province, on the border with Pakistan. “Intensive battles are going on between both the Afghan forces and the insurgents”, he said. Although the attack overthrew the Taliban, many areas across Afghanistan still face violence and insecurity.
No group, including the Afghan Taliban, has claimed responsibility for the blast. They underscored that the interest of Afghan people, who had suffered enormously in the past, should be held above everything.
The Islamic State (IS) group is making inroads in Afghanistan, winning over a growing number of sympathizers and recruiting followers in 25 of the country’s 34 provinces, a United Nations report has said.
Sediqqi said military reinforcements were being sent to Kunduz, where government forces managed to fend off a major Taliban assault in April, the start of the insurgents’ annual summer offensive.
The deputy spokesman for President Ashraf Ghani had earlier described the situation in Kunduz as “fluid”. Afghan News Agency on Twitter, become a fan on Facebook.
The raids on eight to 10 police posts began on early Sunday, Haji Ghalib, governor of Achin district in Nangarhar province, told AFP, giving no casualty figures.
The Taliban have spent recent weeks trying to patch up a rift in their movement sparked by the power struggle which followed the admission that founder Mullah Omar had died in 2013. A bitter internal dispute over the appointment of Mansoor has yet to be fully resolved, but seems to have had little impact on the battlefield.