Afghan security forces have killed 10 fighters who claimed to be from Islamic State (IS) in Afghanistan, officials said, amid reports that growing numbers of disgruntled Taliban fighters have joined the militant group that controls much of Syria and Iraq.
Defense ministry spokesman Dawlat Waziri said the militants were all associated with the Islamic State, known in Afghanistan as “Daesh”. They were killed in an operation in the southern province of Helmand on Sunday.
The government identified one of the militants as Hafiz Wahidi, the nephew and successor of Mullah Abdul Rauf, a veteran militant killed last month in a drone strike.
Officials say Rauf, a former Guantanamo Bay detainee, had also defected from the Taliban and called himself the leader of the Islamic State in Helmand.