In a scathing attack on Pakistan, Afghan envoy to the UN said Pakistan-based terror groups such as LeT, the Taliban, JeM and al Qaeda target India’s interests and goals in Afghanistan and pursue other objectives like creating sanctuaries and safe havens in tribal areas between Kabul and Islamabad.
“These groups pose a strategic threat to the security and stability of Afghanistan,” permanent Afghan representative Mahmoud Saikal said at an open briefing of the counter-terrorism committee on foreign terrorists on Friday.
He said these terror groups “pursue a few objectives” in Afghanistan, the main among them being “revival of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, targeting India’s interests and goals in Afghanistan” and forming “strategic alliances with international terrorist networks in the region and world”.
These groups also seek withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan, creating bases and safe havens in northern and north-eastern provinces and using them as a platform for “undermining and toppling” Central Asian “secular” governments, Saikal said.
They also pursue the objective of creating “ sanctuaries and safe havens “ in tribal areas between Afghanistan and Pakistan and along the Durand Line, the 2,430-kilometre long international border between Pakistan and Afghanistan.
He said there are 6,100 foreign fighters in Afghanistan, based mainly in eastern and north-eastern provinces. Among them about 1,800-2,000 have pledged allegiance to the ISIS.
“We also have Pakistani terrorist groups like JeM and Laskhar-e-Islam also cooperating with the Taliban in eastern and south-eastern provinces of Afghanistan,” Saikal said.
The threat of foreign fighters and regional terror groups are of “growing concern” to Afghanistan and the world, the Afghan envoy said.
“Improving the implementation of counter-terrorism resolutions is crucial, especially the UN Security Council [resolutions]. Speed is the essence and at the moment, terror is moving fast. I hope we can catch up with it soon,” he said.