Taliban affiliate Al Qaeda calls for liberation of Kashmir as part of global jihad

  • The Al Qaeda statement came on the day the senior Taliban leader Sher Mohammed Stanakzai assured the Indian envoy to Qatar that no anti-India activity would be allowed in Afghanistan.
The Taliban has repeatedly assured other countries, including India and the US, that they won’t allow terrorist groups to use Afghan soil against them.
The Taliban has repeatedly assured other countries, including India and the US, that they won’t allow terrorist groups to use Afghan soil against them.
Updated on Sep 01, 2021 09:16 PM IST
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By Shishir Gupta, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

The Narendra Modi government has noted with concern the statement issued by Taliban affiliate Al Qaeda on Tuesday praising the Sunni Pashtun US-designated terrorist group for humiliating and defeating American forces and then expelling them from Afghanistan and virtually exhorting the Islamist forces to launch global jihad to liberate Palestine, Islamic Magreb, Somalia, Yemen and Kashmir from the enemies of Islam. The Al Qaeda statement came on the day the senior Taliban leader Sher Mohammed Stanakzai assured the Indian envoy to Qatar that no anti-India activity would be allowed in Afghanistan.

While US President Joe Biden claimed victory in Afghanistan after what he called decimating of Al Qaeda and killing of their leader Osama bin Laden, the Al Qaeda statement shows the group is alive and kicking in Afghanistan as it sought the allegiance of Taliban supreme leader Mullah Hibatullah Akundzada and previous two Ameer-ul-Momeen of the Islamist group including Mullah Omar. Just as the Taliban have never raised the issue of Kashmir, they have also never criticised the Al Qaeda group. The statement reveals that the so-called liberation of Afghanistan was the first step and a precursor to global jihad by the Islamist group. It is quite evident that the capture of Kabul by the Taliban has made the group a rallying point for all jihadists in the world.

On Tuesday, Al Qaeda called on the Taliban to "liberate" Kashmir, Palestine, Yemen and other "Islamic lands" just as they liberated Afghanistan from the US occupation. In a message congratulating the Taliban, the terrorist group said that the victory of insurgents in Afghanistan demonstrated what the Islamic nation is capable of, adding that “jihad is the only way” towards “victory and empowerment”.

"It is time for you to prepare for the next stage of the struggle, the way for which has been paved by the victory of the defiant Afghan nation," al Qaeda said, asserting that the victory of the Taliban is a prelude to the “liberation” of the rest of the Islamic nations.

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The terrorist group, co-founded by Osama bin Laden in 1988, claimed that the complete withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan has humiliated the United States and tarnished its global reputation. Calling Afghanistan a “graveyard of empires and an impregnable fortress of Islam”, al Qaeda said that the war-torn country has “successfully defeated and expelled” an invading imperialist power twice within a span of fewer than two centuries. The group extended its congratulations to Taliban supreme leader Hibatullah Akhundzada.

“On this historic occasion, we would like to offer our congratulations to the leadership of Islamic Emirate, specifically to the Leader of the Believers, Hibbatullah Akhundzada,” it said.

The Taliban has repeatedly assured other countries, including India and the US, that they won’t allow terrorist groups to use Afghan soil against them. In the peace deal signed between the US and Taliban which led to the foreign troops’ withdrawal from Afghanistan, the Islamist fundamentalists have specifically pledged to prevent al Qaeda and other terrorist networks from using Afghan soil.

“It is time for you to prepare for the next stage of the struggle, the way for which has been paved by the victory of the defiant Afghan nation. With the help of Allah, this historic victory will open the way for the Muslim masses to achieve liberation from the despotic rule of tyrants who have been imposed by the West on the Islamic world,” al Qaeda made the clarion call.

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Monday, October 25, 2021