ISIL launches new attacks in eastern Afghanistan

by WorldTribune Staff, June 27, 2016

Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) is staging a comeback in Afghanistan just months after Kabul said the terror group had been defeated.

ISIL jihadists in Afghanistan.
ISIL jihadists in Afghanistan.

At least a dozen Afghan security forces and civilians were killed and another 18 wounded as ISIL jihadists attacked police checkpoints in the Kot area of eastern Nangarhar province, provincial governor Salim Khan Kunduzi said.

Kunduzi said more than 30 ISIL jihadists were killed in the fighting which also forced “scores of people” from their homes.

The U.S. military estimates between 1,000 and 3,000 ISIL fighters are in Afghanistan, mostly comprised of disaffected Pakistani and Afghan Taliban, as well as Uzbek Islamists and locals.

In March, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani announced that ISIL had been defeated following a months-long military operation.

Analysts say the latest attacks indicate ISIL remains a potent threat to Afghanistan, which also continues to battle an insurgency by the Taliban.

Earlier this month President Barack Obama ordered the U.S. military to tackle the resurgent Taliban more directly — in tandem with Afghan allies, ratcheting up a 15-year conflict he had vowed to end.