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ISIS in serious decline but Al Qaeda and Taliban are BACK – and planning more attacks

ISIS may be losing territory in Syria and Iraq at a rapid rate but older terrorist groups like Al Qaeda and Taliban are once again gaining real power in the Middle East.

The worrying claim was made by Afghanistan’s defence minister Masoom Stanikzai, who revealed that the two terror groups were on the rise in the country after years of decline.

Mr Stanikzai also made a chilling prediction that the resurgent jihadis were planning “bigger attacks” – awakening bitter memories of Al Qaeda’s September 11 killings in America and the countless massacres of innocent Afghan people by Taliban soldiers during their leadership reign.

He said: “They are really very active. They are working in quiet and reorganising themselves and preparing themselves for bigger attacks.

“They are working behind other networks, giving them support and the experience they had in different places.

“And doubling their resources and recruitment. That is how – they are not talking too much. They are not making press statements. It is a big threat.”

The two groups were severely weakened during the War on Terror, launched after Al Qaeda killed almost 3,000 innocent people in a series of attacks across the US on 9/11.

The US and UK-led war targeted the Taliban government in Afghanistan as well as Al Qaeda camps across the region. Following years of struggle, the leadership of both parties was eroded, reducing the terror organisations to a series of independent and far less effective factions.

However, in recent years the groups have again begun re-establishing while the world has been focused on the sheer evil of ISIS’s terrorist attacks.

This is highlighted by the recent discovery of a new Al Qaede training camp in Afghanistan, which shattered assumptions about the group’s limited power.

Major General Jeff Buchanan, Deputy Chief of Staff for the US military presence in Afghanistan, said: “If you go back to last year, there were a lot of intel estimates that said within Afghanistan Al Qaeda probably has 50 to 100 members – but in this one camp we found more than 150.”

“There’s not thousands of them, but clearly in remote parts of Afghanistan there are Al Qaeda leaders we’re concerned about and what they’re capable of doing.”

News of the resurgence has come amid a background of ISIS decline, with the bloodthirsty extremists, also known as Daesh, suffering massive losses in territory and fighter numbers.

While ISIS continue to have a growing influence in the Western World through the deadly terror attacks in Paris and Brussels, their power on the ground in the Middle East is now on the wane.

Recent estimates put the number of ISIS


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