News - Afghanistan
National Security Advisor Mohammad Hanif Atmar acknowledged in Tuesday's Senate meeting that Daesh posed a serious threat to Afghanistan's national interests.
Briefing the senators on the security situation in Tuesday's session, Atmar assured that the government had formulated a new strategy to curb Daesh militants – an extremist group that has seized large swathes in Iraq and Syria.
"Government of Afghanistan believes that Daesh is a serious threat to our national interests just like al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups," Atmar reiterated.
"Three months ago, Daesh officially announced its stance on Afghanistan and the region in which it didn't consider Afghanistan's sovereignty," Atmar said. "Daesh expects to unify the whole region into one province under the name of Khurasan Caliphate. Therefore, they have given this responsibility to infamous terrorist Hafiz Saeed of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan [TTP]."
Referring to the presence of East Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM) militants in northern Afghanistan, Atmar stated that many particular groups were trying to reach their destinations through the Afghan territory.
He told the meeting that ETIM militants tried to enter into China through northern parts of Afghanistan.
"Ansarullah group wants to enter Tajikistan. Uzbekistan Islamic Movement [IMU] wants to enter Uzbekistan and then Russia. And Lashkar-e-Tayyiba is trying to enter Kashmir through the northeastern areas of Afghanistan," Atmar said.
He maintained that Afghanistan was facing serious threats from foreign militant groups – from al-Qaeda and Daesh to Tehreek Taliban Pakistan, Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, IMU, Ansarullah of Tajikistan and ETIM.
According to Atmar, the insurgent hideouts located in Pakistan were posing a serious threat to Afghanistan's peace and stability.
"We asked Pakistan to help us in the peace process, but our main demand was to eliminate insurgent hideouts located across the Afghan border. And we will not show any flexibility toward Pakistan in this respect," Atmar declared.
Referring to remarks by a number of senators that Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) between Kabul and Washington didn't work in favor of Afghanistan, Atmar emphasized that Afghanistan was satisfied with the security accord – signed last year, a day after President Ashraf Ghani was inaugurated.
He noted that U.S. and its allies were committed to providing an annual aid of $4 billion USD to Afghan forces.
"US assists Afghan forces with $12 million dollars on daily basis which is a huge amount," Atmar noted.
Referring to recent claims by the governor of eastern Paktika, Atmar cleared that the National Security Council (NSC) had paid no money to Daesh families in the province.
The session was concluded with a statement by chairman of Senate that Atmar managed to satisfy the senators with his answers.