February 27, 2024 Special Dispatch No. 11151

In Dari-Language Article, Pro-Afghan Taliban Website Slams Iran For Killing Sunni Muslims In The Middle East: 'You Can Be Sure That Iran Has No Problem With Israel In The Middle East; Both Iran And Israel Are Trying To Destroy The Sunni Arabs Living There'

February 27, 2024
Afghanistan, Iran | Special Dispatch No. 11151

The following report is now a complimentary offering from MEMRI's Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM). For JTTM subscription information, click here. 

In an February 7, 2024 interview with the state-run Ufuq News of Iran, Iranian Ambassador to Afghanistan Hassan Kazemi Qomi said that Ishtishhadi (i.e., martyrdom-seeking) battalions from Afghanistan will go to fight against Israel in Palestine if needed.[1]

Ambassador Qomi stated: "If there is... necessity, more than one brigade of martyrdom forces [i.e., suicide bombers] can go from Afghanistan to Gaza in support of Gaza... Afghanistan is farther away from Gaza. But what we see and observe in Afghanistan today is that Afghanistan is part of the Axis of Resistance."[2]

The Afghan Taliban have had close relations with Iran for decades, including during the Afghanistan War. Taliban leaders refrained from commenting officially on Ambassador Qomi's statement, which was not received well.

On February 8, the day after Qomi's interview, the pro-Afghan Taliban Al-Mirsaad website published a Dari-language article criticizing Iran for using militias, not the Iranian armed forces, to fight for its cause in the Middle East. The article, titled "Iran's Failed Policy In The Middle East" and written by Nasir Saeed, said: "You can be sure that Iran has no problem with Israel in the Middle East; both Iran and Israel are trying to destroy the Sunni Arabs living there.[3]

Following is the text of the article, as translated from Dari:

"Afghanistan's neighbors have not yet understood the Islamic Emirate [the Afghan Taliban regime]. From their comments, it seems that Afghanistan is still the Afghanistan of 1990, while Afghanistan is dreaming of becoming a globalized kingdom.

"The issue of Palestine is actually the issue of all Muslim nations, and it should be decided jointly, but Iran's failed policy in the Middle East has caused a serious threat to this region. Iran helps the Shi'ite minorities there to become stronger and the region comes under Iranian influence; this policy has damaged the relations between Iran and the Gulf countries.

"You can be sure that Iran has no problem with Israel in the Middle East; both Iran and Israel are trying to destroy the Sunni Arabs living there. What is Iran doing in Iraq? Who is Iran killing in Syria? What did Iran do in Yemen?

"One of the important reasons for Arab countries' disinterest in the Palestinian war is that Hamas has strong ties with Iran. [Ambassador] Hassan Kazemi Qomi wants Ishtishhadi [martyrdom-seeking] battalions from Afghanistan for the Palestine war; why doesn't he give the order for war to Hezbollah, who are strong in every way in the region?

"Why doesn't Iran really support Hamas? Why do their [militia] forces, who kill Sunni Muslims in Syria, not fight Israel? It is surprising that they kill Sunnis in Syria and Iraq, destroy their houses, destroy their mosques, and defend Palestine!

"Qomi's statements show that Afghanistan is a hotbed of fighters, many of whom are irresponsible. If Iran changes its failed and biased policy in the region, a little security may be established there and steps may be taken to establish an independent Palestine."


[1] (Iran), February 7, 2024.

[2] (Afghanistan), February 10, 2024; (Iran), February 7, 2024.

[3] (Afghanistan), February 8, 2024.

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