BERLIN, September 6. /TASS/. The IS terrorist organization (outlawed in Russia) did not pose a threat to Afghanistan, Spokesman for the Taliban (banned in Russia) Zabihullah Mujahid said to the German Bild newspaper on Monday.
"First of all, let me tell you that ISIS is not a threat in Afghanistan for many reasons. Firstly, the ISIS we had in our country did not come from Iraq and Syria," Mujahid stated. At the same time, he noted that only a small number of Afghans were under their influence, fighting against foreign forces stationed in Afghanistan. "Secondly, there was no Islamic government, and this motivated them to fight against foreign troops," the Taliban spokesman mentioned.
Furthermore, Mujahid assured that after the withdrawal of foreign troops and the Taliban’s rise to power, the extremist ideology of the IS would not spread across Afghanistan. "The Islamic Emirate (the name the Taliban calls itself) is responsible for security in Afghanistan, we will have our country fully secure, we will have our country safe from any kind of threats <…>," Mujahid said.
The spokesman also emphasized a big difference between the Taliban and IS. "The Islamic Emirate has never had the idea of attacking foreign countries, attacking foreign diplomats, and interfering in other countries' internal affairs. Everything we did in the past twenty years was aimed at making our country independent," Mujahid noted.
On August 15, Taliban fighters swept into Kabul without encountering any resistance, and gained full control over the Afghan capital within a few hours. Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani said he had stepped down to prevent any bloodshed and subsequently fled the country. The northern province of Panjshir is the only pocket of resistance to the Taliban. It is led by Ahmad Massoud, a son of Ahmad Shah Massoud (1953-2001). Former Vice President Amrullah Saleh, who has claimed the office of acting president of Afghanistan is calling on the Afghan public to support Massoud.