Afghan foreign minister says Pakistani terror groups have symbiotic relations with Al Qaeda, IS

WION New Delhi, Delhi, India Aug 07, 2020, 02.16 AM(IST) Written By: Sidhant Sibal

File photo: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan Photograph:( ANI )

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'They all have symbiotic relationships. Not only among themselves but also transnational organised criminal network. They benefit from narcotics, they benefit from organised crime,' he said

Afghan Foreign Minister Mohammed Haneef Atmar has listed Pakistani terrorist groups like Lashkar-e-Toiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad as having "symbiotic" ties other terror groups in the region including Al Qaeda, Islamic State and collectively posing as a threat to the region.

Speaking at Hoover Institution's virtual event, Atmar said, "It is not just Taliban we are fighting in Afghanistan. There are 4 groups of transnational terror networks. There are those who are Afghans, 2nd group is regional terrorist, such as Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), East Turkestan Islamic Movement, Pakistani terrorist group is the 3rd category such as Lashkar-e-Toiba, TTP, Jaish-e-Mohammad and intl terrorist groups--Al Qaeda, Daesh"

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Explaining, "They all have symbiotic relationships. Not only among themselves but also transnational organised criminal network. They benefit from narcotics, they benefit from organised crime. They collectively pose a national security threat, to the region and the world."

India has raised many concerns regarding cross border terror emerging from Pakistan at the multilateral organisation

Without naming Pakistan, calling the failure to address sanctuaries outside Afghanistan, Atmar said, "The problem of sanctuaries outside Afghanistan...The Taliban has driven away from Afghanistan, they were given sanctuaries outside of Afghanistan and to this day we were not able to address the sanctuary problem" 

A recent United Nations report highlighted that about 6500 Pakistani as foreign terrorist fighters are present in Afghanistan with Pakistan based terror groups like Jaish-e-Mohammed and Lashkar-e-Toiba having around 1000 armed fighters in the landlocked South Asian country. Most of the Jaish-e-Mohammed and Lashkar-e-Toiba fighters are co-located with Taliban fighters and are hand in glove with them.