Afghan security forces to launch large-scale operation against Islamic State militant group amid concerns over the presence of foreign fighters in northern parts of the country, the Defense Ministry said Monday.
Local officials in Jowzjan province say, Daesh affiliated fighters including French, Turkmen, Tajik, Chechen and Algerian insurgents are being involved in training and recruitment in Darzab and Qushtepa districts of the province, adding that their presence has caused the provincial schools to be shut down and the road leading into Darzab and Qushtepa districts to be closed to traffic.
“The numbers of Foreign Daesh fighters who are active in Darzab and Qushteba districts are about 40, mostly from Uzbekistan, three of them French nationals including two women and a man,” said Jowzjan Governor’s Spokesman, Mohammad Reza Qafoori.
The Defense Ministry Deputy Spokesman, Mohammad Radmanish, however, said that they are planning to conduct offensive against these foreign fighters, mainly in Jowzjan and Faryab provinces.
This comes as Afghan security forces have reportedly arrested at least twelve militants, eleven Chechens and one Azerbaijani, who have entered Logar province to train Taliban fighters.