Islamic State radio show seeks new recruits in Afghanistan

"Its broadcasts and will have a negative impact on our youths, elders and community," says local.

December 22, 2015 08:28
1 minute read.

Afghani residents tuning in to ISIS broadcast on radio.. (photo credit: REUTERS)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Islamic State militants in eastern Afghanistan have taken to radio airwaves to win recruits as they try to build strength and replace the Taliban as the leading force in the Islamist insurgency.

Officials have been increasingly concerned by the broadcasts, which encourage young people to find a sense of direction in the radical movement.

If the broadcasts take hold, officials fear they will feed off a growing sense of hopelessness among many inured to war and struggling to get by in an increasingly tough economic climate.

In a shop in Jalalabad, a city within the radio broadcasts' sphere, residents could be seen huddled around a radio.

"Its broadcasts and will have a negative impact on our youths, elders and community," said Layq Gham Sharik.

Another resident, Ayatullah Niazai, said he wanted the national government to end the broadcasts "as soon as possible."

The 90-minute daily Pashto language broadcast, called "Voice of the Caliphate", consists mainly of interviews, messages and songs about Islamic State.

It can be heard in Nangarhar, the eastern province where Islamic State has established its stronghold.

It controls several districts wrested from the Taliban, who are seeking to re-establish their hard-line Islamist regime after being toppled by US-led military intervention in 2001.

Officials in Nangarhar say they had so far been unable to block the broadcasts, which appear to shift location regularly.

"The radio (Islamic State radio) operates from border areas in Nangarhar," a spokesman for its governor's office, Attaullah Khogyani, told Reuters. "Afghan security and detective forces are jointly working to find it. We have some progress and soon this radio will be disabled and its workers will be arrested."

Islamic State is a relatively new force in Afghanistan and there is some dispute about how strong it is, how many members it commands and how closely it is linked operationally to the movement's main arm in Iraq and Syria.

Security officials say many members are former Taliban fighters who have fallen out with the current leadership or who are seeking a more extreme form of militant activity.

Last week, the commander of international forces in Afghanistan, US General John Campbell, said there were between 1,000 and 3,000 members of the movement in Afghanistan and he said its influence would spread if left unchecked.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Kurds protest Assad in Syrian town Qamishli
March 18, 2019
Turkey hopes Iran, Iraq and Syria will help it strangle the PKK