Senior intelligence officials from Iran, Russia, China, and Pakistan have reportedly reached an agreement to join efforts against Daesh terror group in Afghanistan.
The officials agreed over integrated efforts for rooting out the outfit from Afghanistan during a meeting in the Pakistani capital of Islamabad, English-language Pakistani daily The Nation reported on Friday, citing defense sources. Sergei Ivanov, the chief of the press bureau of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service, had also told Russia’s TASS news agency about the meeting on Tuesday.
The quartet also agreed on confronting “all other terrorists groups” in the Central Asian country, the daily said.
The drive, it wrote, was aimed at “ensuring regional peace and to eliminate terrorism from the region.”
The meeting also discussed ways to stop the arrival of Daesh Takfiri terrorists from Iraq and Syria in Afghanistan.
The participants further agreed to share intelligence towards fighting terror.
The Russian side cited the Russian intelligence agency as saying that around 10,000 Daesh terrorists were functioning actively in nine provinces in Afghanistan.
The Iranian side cited concerns regarding Daesh’s growing influence in Afghanistan, according to The Nation.
The group’s Afghanistan branch, known as Daesh-Khurasan, was ”involved in planning continued suicide attacks especially in Pakistan,” the meeting was told.
Most recently, the group claimed responsibility for an explosion that killed at least 128 people targeting an election rally in Pakistan's southwestern province of Baluchistan on Friday.
Daesh began its campaign of bloodshed and destruction in Iraq and Syria in 2014. It seized large swathes of land in lightning strikes, prompting the countries to invite the assistance of their allies, including the Islamic Republic.
Iran has been lending military advisory assistance to the Iraqi and Syrian armies in the face of the terrorists.
The group was defeated in the countries towards the end of last year. It’s remnants, however, have been still staging sporadic attacks there.
The group maintains a presence in Afghanistan, most notably in the eastern province of Nangarhar.