The Islamic State-Khorasan’s Recent Reorganization and Remaining Threat for Central Asia in 2024

  • Ivaylo Valentinov Tassev

Abstract

The self-proclaimed Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) was defeated in 2019 but today there are still some branches of the organization active in various parts of the world. For a long time ISIS functioned as a state (a self-proclaimed caliphate) with its territory, governance, and bureaucracy although it was not recognized on an international level. The main research question is what makes ISIS (as being an unrecognized state) a challenge for international and regional security today. This presentation refers to the first question in the workshop regarding how continuities, changes and/or transformations are expressed in the practice of terrorism. ISIS is not functioning anymore as a state but has autonomous local affiliates around the world. This is also related to the implications of borders, spaces and territorialities on the fight against terrorism. The report looks more specifically at the activities of the Islamic State-Khorasan Province (ISK or ISKP) in Central Asia and particularly in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Its strategy on a regional and international level comprises interlinked media warfare and kinetic action. The military and political pressures have caused it to restructure or face a more lasting attenuation. Although it is now reorganizing, it still presents a danger in Central Asia. The very recent example is the attack in Iran from January 3. The author provides some future recommendations on how the international community should address the current risks presented by ISK in particular.

References

Al Jazeera. (2018). Suicide Bombing at Kabul Religious Gathering Kills Dozens.
Alkhouri, L., & Webber, L. (2022). Islamic State Launches New Tajik Propaganda Network. Eurasianet.
Ashraf, S. (2017). ISIS Khorasan: Presence and Potential in the Afghanistan-Pakistan Region. Centre for the Response to Radicalization and Terrorism at the Henry Jackson Society.
Bne IntelliNews. (2023). 4,000 Islamic State Fighters Gathered near Afghanistan Border with Tajikistan Says Kremlin Officer. bne IntelliNews.
CBS. (2023). Bomb Blast at Kabul Checkpoint Kills and Wounds Several, Taliban says. CBS News.
Doxsee, C., & Thompson, J. (2021). Examining Extremism: Islamic State Khorasan Province (ISKP). Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS).
Eggink, K. (2024). ICCT Snapshot: Islamic State - Khorasan Province. International Centre for Counter-Terrorism (ICCT).
Goldbaum, C. (2023). ISIS Affiliate Claims Responsibility for Deadly Attack at Rally in Pakistan. New York Times.
Hamming, T. (2023). The General Directorate of Provinces: Managing the Islamic State’s Global Network. CTC Sentinel 16(7), 20-27.
Jadoon, A. (2018). ISK in Afghanistan and Pakistan. In A. Jadoon (Ed.), Allied & Lethal: Islamic State Khorasan’s Network and Organizational Capacity in Afghanistan and Pakistan (pp. 10–30). Combating Terrorism Center at West Point.
Jadoon, A., Mines, A., & Sayed, A. (2023). The Enduring Duel: Islamic State Khorasan’s survival under Afghanistan’s New Rulers. CTC Sentinel 16(8), 8-15.
Johnson, B. (2023). ISIS Vows to ‘Soon Take Revenge’ for Quran Burning While Urging ‘Strategic’ Use of ‘Blood, Corpses, and Killings’. Homeland Security Today.
Lederer, E. (2023). Islamic State Group Still Has Thousands in Syria and Iraq and Poses Afghan Threat, UN Experts Say. ABC News.
Loveluck, L. (2019). Thousands of Women and Children Fleeing ISIS Stronghold Flood into Syrian Camp. Washington Post.
Loveluck, L., & Cahlan, S. (2022). Prison Break: ISIS Fighters Launched a Brazen Attack to Free their Comrades. Washington Post.
Osman, B. (2020). Salafism in Afghanistan and the Emergence of ISKP: A Brief History. In Bourgeois Jihad: Why Young, Middle class Afghans Join the Islamic State, 6-10. US Institute of Peace.
Palmer, A., & Holtz, M., (2023). The Islamic State Threat in Pakistan: Trends and Scenarios. Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).
Robinson, K. (2023). Defeated and Detained, Islamic State Still Poses Extremism Threat. Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).
Sayed, A., & Hamming, T. R. (2023). The Growing Threat of the Islamic State in Afghanistan and South Asia. United States Institute of Peace.
Sayed, A., & Jadoon, A. (2022). Understanding Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan's Unrelenting Posture. GW Program on Extremism.
South China Morning Post. (2021). Explainer: Islamic State in Afghanistan: What is ISIS-K and Why is it an Enemy of the Taliban?
The Soufan Center. (2023). IntelBrief: Islamic State Khorasan Remains a Stubborn Threat in Afghanistan. The Soufan Center.
Webber, L., & Valle, R.. (2023). The Islamic State’s Central Asian Contingents and Their International Threat. Hudson Institute.
Wilson Center. (2023). US Officials on Jihadi Threat in 2023.
Published
2024-06-01
How to Cite
VALENTINOV TASSEV, Ivaylo. The Islamic State-Khorasan’s Recent Reorganization and Remaining Threat for Central Asia in 2024. Asian Journal of Research in Education and Social Sciences, [S.l.], v. 6, n. 2, p. 475-479, june 2024. Available at: <https://myjms.mohe.gov.my/index.php/ajress/article/view/26879>. Date accessed: 26 july 2024.
Section
English Section