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Islamic State spreading throughout nearly all Afghanistan’s provinces, according to UN envoy

Islamic State

IS-K, the Taliban’s sworn nemesis, was responsible for a suicide explosion outside Kabul airport in August and other bombings in Shia mosques recently. 

Afghanistan’s provinces are becoming “increasingly active.” Deborah Lyons, the UN special representative for Afghanistan, told the UN Security Council during a briefing on the situation in Afghanistan following the Taliban’s takeover that the Taliban “appears to rely heavily on extrajudicial detentions and killings” in their response to suspected Islamic State-Khorasan members. “Another major negative development has been the Taliban’s inability to stem the expansion of the Islamic State in Iraq and in Levant Khorasan Province. Once limited to a few provinces and Kabul, ISILKP now seems to be present in nearly all provinces and increasingly active,” Lyons told the Council.

IS-K, the Taliban’s sworn nemesis, was responsible for a suicide explosion outside Kabul airport in August and other bombings in Shia mosques recently. The Taliban’s “genuine endeavor” to depict itself as a government is hampered by a “lack of resources and capacity,” as well as a “political philosophy that contradicts contemporary international principles of governance,” according to the UN envoy. She also cited the Taliban’s “severe internal conflict” as a hindrance to gaining full trust from the Afghan population and convincing them of their ability to govern.

Because the all-male government is mostly made up of Sunni Pashtuns, the Taliban’s broader acceptance among the Afghan public has been a source of concern. The international world has frequently called for a more inclusive administration with adequate representation for women and ethnic minorities. “Ultimately, however, the Taliban must decide on whether to govern according to the needs and the rights of the diverse Afghan population, or whether to rule on the basis of a narrow ideology and an even narrower ethnic base,” Lyons added.

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