Enemy of enemy: Hekmatyar support for IS stuns observers

Published: July 7, 2015
Gulbadin Hekmatyar. PHOTO: EXPRESS

Gulbadin Hekmatyar. PHOTO: EXPRESS


In a startling move, Hizb-e-Islami chief Gulbuddin Hekmatyar has advised his supporters to help the Islamic State (IS) or Dai’sh in its fight against the Taliban. 

Hekmatyar’s controversial remarks came amid reports of fighting between the Taliban and IS in parts of Nangarhar province.

Nearly 80 people, including some known personalities, from both sides have been killed since May 10, senior Afghan Taliban leader Anwarul Haq Mujahid said last week.

Last month, the Taliban issued a warning to Dai’sh leader Abu Bakar Baghdadi asking him to stay out of Afghanistan.

Senior Afghan officials are showing concerns at the looming IS threat and the government of President Ashraf Ghani has raised a special force to fight the group.

“If the Taliban of the Emirate fight with those who have quit the Taliban and declared allegiance to the Islamic State, help these militants, because the Taliban are sworn enemies of Hizb-e-Islami,” Hekamtayr advised his supporters in a statement posted on the Hizb’s daily ‘Shahadat’.

The Hizb-e-Islami itself had been involved in fighting with the Taliban fighters on several occasions and in parts of Maida-e-Wardak province.

Hekmatyar had also kept an option open for his supporters, asking them to stand with the Taliban if they are involved in fighting with the Communists and remnants of Shoora-e-Nazar, a group once led by Ahmad Shah Masood, who was killed by al-Qaeda in September 2001.

The Hizb chief said he has announced this strategy as the enemy had created the Communists, Shoora-e-Nazar and the Taliban against Hizb-e-Islami who do not hesitate to commit crimes against it.

“As these groups are creating new problems in the country so it is suitable time for Hizb-e-Islami to adopt a new approach towards them,” said the former prime minister.

Hekmatyar’s remarks plunged the Hizb-e-Islami into a crisis as its leaders were surprised to see what some described as a statement in favour of Dai’sh.

The Express Tribune has learnt that the Hizb central council is likely to meet soon to explore ways to respond to criticism at Hekmatyar’s remarks.

In a separate statement, Hekmatyar has condemned Iran as “a country against Islam” and said the Islamic Republic was “another Israel for the Islamic countries.”

Hekmatyar accused Iran of “fomenting sectarian hatred between Shias and Sunnis in Pakistan.”

Blasts in Sunni mosques during prayers and the killing of Sunni leaders is the handiwork of Iranian Pasdaran-e-Inqilab (Revolutionary Guards),” he alleged. He mentioned the killing of former NWFP governor Fazale Haq.

“Iran’s politics is based on lies. Iran has always stood with the enemy and stabbed the Muslim Ummah at the back,” the Hizb chief said.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 7th, 2015.

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Reader Comments (11)

  • Shuaib Bhat
    Jul 7, 2015 - 10:36AM

    The world is coming to an end. Afghanistan will burn itself to the ground, Pakistan must build a 20 feet tall fence because it’ll leak over to Pakistan.Recommend

  • B
    Jul 7, 2015 - 11:53AM

    So he is on the same page with India. Another Indian RWA agent caught?Recommend

  • Bilal
    Jul 7, 2015 - 12:15PM

    Then who is gonna fight IS after Taliban are finishedRecommend

  • devindersingh
    Jul 7, 2015 - 12:17PM

    @Shuaib Bhat:
    Hahhahaha, why are you shocked,they are doing exactly as per religious text.they are getting moral supports from text now it will end with many things.till you all people my mean Muslim will not stand and support the reform in islam and ask for uniform civil code till this will not gona end now . Don’t see other people mistakes see weakness in your own attitude. I hope bro you understand my mean.i wish you gud luk and wish for reform Pakistan.Recommend

  • MK
    Jul 7, 2015 - 1:05PM

    Hekmatyar is a known flip-flopper and opportunistRecommend

  • Hasan Ansari
    Jul 7, 2015 - 1:19PM

    Please fight among your self to extinction.
    Divide and destroy. This is an opportunity of a lifetime !Recommend

  • Afghan Maihan
    Jul 7, 2015 - 1:58PM

    Hekmatyar is a perennial loser and a fence sitter who is always choosing the winning side. His remarks against Iran betrays his utter lack of loyalty to a country that gave him refuge when he was kicked out of Pakistan.

    He hopes to rekindle his affair with the ISI after being sidelined in favor of the Taliban. Hekmatyar will never ever be a part of any political dispensation in Afghanistan because he burned all his bridges by using and abusing all and sundry and raining rockets on Kabul, which killed thousands. He will die a fugitive or get assassinated by his erstwhile partners in crime and I hope his fate is the latter.Recommend

  • vicktor d'souza
    Jul 7, 2015 - 2:24PM

    @Shuaib Bhat:
    The leak goes both ways, but all the same, a great wall of ‘china’ would be nice.Recommend

  • Milind
    Jul 7, 2015 - 4:01PM

    @Shuaib Bhat – So where are you going to build that 20 feet fence/wall? Last I heard, Afghans don’t recognize the Durand Line and claim Peshawar as their own.Recommend

  • Ch. Allah Daad
    Jul 7, 2015 - 5:16PM

    Who are these idiot observers. Can they tell difference between Taliban and IS?Recommend

  • Jul 7, 2015 - 8:03PM

    the only hope of af-pak region, is to abandon all the terrorist groups. a joint command and control structure with the help of nato to locate and terminate all the terrorist elements from both side of the durand line has now become must. even if an established afghanistan tilted toward india, it would be much less of threat than having IS in our background. Recommend

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