The U.S. President Barak Obama says that Al Qaida is pinned down, but they still pose a threat as it is operative in areas between Pakistan and Afghanistan.
“We can disable them, but in the same way that Al Qaida is pinned down and has much more difficulty carrying out any significant attacks because of how we have systemically dismantled them, they still pose a threat.” President Obama at the end-of-year news conference said,” There are still operatives who are interested in carrying out terrorist attacks because they still operate in areas between Pakistan and Afghanistan”.
Obama says Washington’s long-term goal is to stabilize the areas that Al Qaida groups are still operative to prevent terrorists make any safe haven.
At the same time, U.S. officials warn a threat from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) extremist group in Afghanistan.
The U.S. Defense Secretary Ashton Carter made an unannounced visit to Afghanistan and met Afghan acting defense minister, Mohammad Massoum Stanekzai in Kabul on Friday said.
“We are seeing little nests of ISIL spring up around the world, including here in Afghanistan, but I will say that that is a threat that we track very closely.”
Pentagon chief added,” There [ISIL] are trying to create little nests wherever they feel there is an opportunity, we make sure they don’t have a nest here in Nangarhar, they are very opportunistic groups like all terrorists are, and they will go where they think they will be safe, there are not gonna be safe in Nangarhar.”
Carter’s Afghanistan visit comes after the Army Gen. John Campbell, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, estimates there are between 1,000 and 3,000 ISIS fighters across Afghanistan and the group is seeking foothold in Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province.
Reported by: Fahim Noori