The Islamic State terrorist group is tearing a path across Afghanistan, establishing itself in “nearly all” of its provinces while increasing attacks more than five-fold in the past year, the UN’s envoy to the country has warned.
Addressing the UN Security Council on Wednesday, the body’s special representative for Afghanistan Deborah Lyons spoke of a major Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) surge through the war-torn country, claiming the jihadist group has now expanded nationwide.
“Once limited to a few provinces and the capital, ISKP now seems to be present in nearly all provinces, and increasingly active,” Lyons said, referring to the group’s Afghanistan-based ‘Khorasan’ faction. In 2021 IS, Lyons stated, has committed 334 acts of terror, up from 60 attacks last year.
The envoy’s comments came just hours after an Islamic State bombing erupted in a Shiite Muslim neighborhood of the Afghan capital, killing one and wounding six others, according to Reuters.
Lyons stated that the Taliban have struggled to control the terrorist group since taking power as government after a chaotic withdrawal by the USA and the collapse of Kabul’s American-backed administration last summer. She noted, however that the Taliban maintains its independence. “waging a concerted campaign”For IS and against IS “genuine efforts to present itself as a government,”It was her response, she stated. “appears to rely heavily on extrajudicial detentions and killings.”
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Lyons stated that despite the increase in IS attacks over the past months, the security situation overall in Afghanistan is improving since the US ended its war in Afghanistan, which lasted for more than two decades.
Apart from the terrorist threat, UN representatives also raised concerns about the future of the country, warning that there could be a crisis. “humanitarian catastrophe” driven by a litany of causes, including foreign sanctions – which she said have “paralyzed” the local banking system – as well as growing levels of food shortages due to famine and a failing economy, among other factors.
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