Russia's special envoy for Afghanistan, Zamir Kabulov, said at a briefing on Thursday that since the Islamic Emirate came to power, the number of ISIS (Daesh) militants has increased by threefold.
"Approximately, tentatively, their number has reached 6,000. If you recall, after the Taliban came to power and their harsh actions with regards to the IS militants, their number was about over 2,000, so even with a rough guess this is a threefold increase," he said.
As quoted by TASS, the envoy added that this is the most negative aspect in the development of the situation in Afghanistan since it is dangerous not only for Kabul but also for the national interests of Russia’s partners such as Iran, Pakistan and China.
"Before the Taliban came to power, there had been over 10,000 IS militants," Kabulov said.
However, the Islamic Emirate denied any claims regarding the rise in Daesh militants in the country.
Qari Yousef Ahmadi, spokesman of the PM, said that ISIS has been suppressed in Afghanistan.
“We reject Zamir Kabulov's allegation that there are 6,000 ISIS fighters operating in Afghanistan. There might be a small number, and it can’t create any problem,” he said.
Meanwhile, analysts in the country have different views on this issue.
"It is truly something to worry about. Because Russia and Kabulov are present in the region and the embassy is gathering information using a variety of ways, I believe that the information about them is quite accurate,” said Waheedullah Faqiri, political analyst.
“Kabulov's remarks are not true. They want to make problems for the Afghan government,” said Sayed Akbar, another political analyst.
Earlier, the Russian president expressed concern about the growing number of ISIS fighters in northern Afghanistan.