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Taliban has not cut ties with Al-Qaeda: Afghan Army Chief Zia

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Kabul | October 27, 2020 10:42:28 AM IST
Taliban is yet to cut ties with al-Qaeda and other terrorist organisations, said the Afghan Chief of Army Staff Yasin Zia in reaction to the killing of the senior al-Qaeda leader Husam Abdul Rauf, known as Abu Mohsen al-Misri.

Tolo News reported that according to an analysis in the Long War Journal, the US has confirmed that al-Misri was killed in Ghazni province earlier in October.

"They (the Taliban) have not cut ties with al-Qaeda. They have relations with other terrorist groups in the region and with Pakistanis, they clearly are working shoulder-to-shoulder in Helmand," Zia said, as quoted by Tolo News.

The Taliban is committed in the deal -- which they signed with the US -- to have no relations with any terrorist groups in the country.

Al-Misri started his activities in al-Qaeda in the 1980s and was a trusted aide to al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri.

President Ashraf Ghani said on Sunday that "the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan is strongly committed to countering terrorism and will not let the country once again become a safe haven of terrorists. Our joint mission with our international allies will continue to root out the scourge of terrorism."

"Our proud national defense and security forces will never allow ten million of their countrymen to be displaced," Ghani added.

Tolo News further quoting the Long War Journal said that it is not clear that whether the Taliban-linked individuals had a role in recognising the hideout of al-Misri but mentioned that it was a clear violation of the US-Taliban deal.

The Taliban spokesperson said that the killing of the al-Qaeda member in a conflict zone requires investigation.

This comes on the back of Russian President Vladimir Putin saying that the continued presence of the US in Afghanistan is beneficial.

"Initially, we backed US forces' presence in Afghanistan and earlier voted in favor of a respective UN Security Council resolution. I still believe that US presence in Afghanistan does not run counter to our external interests," Putin said in an interview to Russian media quoted by Tolo News. (ANI)

 
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