Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

AAN in the Media

The Black Flag South Of The Amu-Darya

< 1 min

RFE/RL, 17 March 2015

AAN’s Thomas Ruttig took part in a radio panel discussing IS sightings in Afghanistan, which the organiser – RFE/RL – introduces as following: “The black flag of the Islamic State (IS) militant group has reportedly been raised in areas of northern Afghanistan, just south of the border with Central Asia.”

Thomas tried to push against exaggerations, to maintain a realistic, non-alarmist look at the issue. here are his short quotes from the printed summary:

Ruttig said there was reason for concern but he was not sure the main threat is the IS. “We have looked at the different places and we actually have only found in three [places] and in of all of those they were local groups who had either been Taliban before or Hezb-e Islami,” Ruttig said. As for reports that cite high figures of hundreds or even 1,000 IS militants, Ruttig advised removing “one zero” from the end of those numbers.

There is also a link to a longer audio of the panel.