Security

Air strikes kill 4 ISIS terrorists in Kunar as partial truce holds with Taliban

AFP

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Herat police monitor the security situation in the city on February 22, the first day of a partial truce with the Taliban. [Omar]

KABUL -- A partial, week-long truce between the Taliban and American and Afghan forces held tenuously for a fourth day Tuesday (February 25), despite several insurgent attacks and the pounding of "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) targets by US forces.

If the reduction in violence between the United States and the Taliban continues, they are expected to sign a historic deal in Doha on Saturday (February 29).

While the agreement does not amount to a full ceasefire -- the insurgents insist it covers only certain urban and military areas -- the number of Taliban attacks has fallen dramatically.

Taliban attacks dropped from an average of 75 a day to about 15 since the truce began on February 22, said an Afghan source speaking on condition of anonymity.

But underscoring the fragility of the situation, the Interior Ministry said five security personnel were killed in three attacks in rural areas on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, US forces announced the death of four ISIS members in two air strikes in Kunar Province.

ISIS is not part of the "reduction in violence" and is being separately pursued by the United States and the Taliban.

The terrorist group first became active in Afghanistan in 2015 and for years held territory in Nangarhar Province, while claiming responsibility for a string of horrific bombings, including in Kabul.

"We continue to eliminate ISIS terrorists wherever they hide to protect Afghanistan while honoring US-Afghan-Taliban agreement to reduce the violence," US Forces-Afghanistan spokesman Sonny Leggett said on Twitter.

The Afghan government said in November that its forces had largely defeated ISIS, but many of the group's members fled from Nangarhar to bordering Kunar in pursuit of safety.

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After the Taliban, ISIS is the only extremist group which will carry out violent and deadly attacks in the big cities of Afghanistan. Therefore, a special force unit should be deployed in the eastern part of Afghanistan to fight the group.

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Who guarantees that after peace deal with the Taliban, ISIS does not become strong? The United States of America should closely monitor the situation and suppress any groups which rise up after the peace made with the Taliban. Afghan people have fear in this ground.

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