The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has said that al-Qaeda operatives in Afghanistan are plotting to reunite with the Taliban for a comeback.
A NATO official asserted that the al-Qaeda affiliates by seeking partnership with the Taliban are trying to remain safe from U.S air strikes.
However, he said that the anti-state fighters and their backers will not be safe from Afghan security forces and their NATO counterparts.
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“We think that they have tried to become closer to the Taliban, primarily because they recognize that if the Taliban can carve out some space, then al-Qaeda can move in under the Taliban and they have got some freedom from U.S strikes, they have got the freedom and the ability to plan that type of thing,” Tolo News quoted Brigadier General Charles Cleveland, deputy chief of staff for communications for Operation Resolute Support, the NATO mission in Afghanistan as saying.
Jens Stoltenberg, NATO secretary general said that the alliance is committed to overcoming the ongoing challenges in Afghanistan that threaten the nation’s stability.
“What we do in Afghanistan …what we are aiming at doing more often and that is to project stability not by deploying NATO forces into combat operations, but by projecting stability by training local forces,” he said.
Afghan Ministry of Interior Affairs spokesman Sediq Sediqqi asserted that the Taliban would have cut their ties with other terrorist groups and that they are already in touch with al-Qaeda, Haqqani network and other groups.
According to NATO statistics, a number of al-Qaeda affiliates are present in Kunar, Paktika, Paktia and Kandahar provinces, but they are not able to launch major attacks on the west.