Who are ISIS-K? What to know about the terrorist group in Afghanistan

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New York Post:

What are ISIS-K’s origins?

ISIS-K is also known as the Islamic State Khorasan, which is named for a historical region in Central Asia that includes part of Afghanistan.

It was established in 2015 after the late ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi chose Pakistani national Hafiz Saeed Khan, a veteran commander of the Terik-e Taliban Pakistan, as the group’s first “emir,” or chief, according to a 2018 report by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

“Because the Lord has sworn: the Lord will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.” Exodus 17:16

Khan brought along many TTP members, including spokesman Sheikh Maqbool and several district chiefs, when he pledged allegiance to al-Baghdadi in October 2014 and many of them were part of its first leadership council, known as the Khorasan Shura.

Former Taliban commander Abdul Rauf Kadim was appointed as Khan’s deputy and ISIS-K’s first fighters included a contingent of Pakistanis from the TTP and Lashkar-e Islam terror groups.

Other terrorists from Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jamaat-ud-Dawa, the Haqqani Network, and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan also defected to ISIS-K.

Former ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who committed suicide during a raid by US special operation forces on his compound in Syria on October 26, 2019.

What kind of strength does the terrorist group have?

ISIS-K’s ranks swelled to an all-time high of between 3,000 and 4,000 in 2016, amid the widespread capture of terrorism in Syria and Iraq by ISIS and a rash of international attacks, including the killing of eight people who were mowed down by a truck — allegedly driven by an ISIS sympathizer — on Manhattan’s West Side bike path in October 2017.

But ISIS-K suffered “successive military setbacks that began in Jowzjan,” a province in northern Afghanistan, in the summer of 2018, according to a June report to the United Nations Security Council by its Analytical Support and Sanctions Monitoring Team. Read More