Taliban fighters in Afghanistan have told ISIS militants in Iraq to “avoid extremism”. The Mail on Sunday reports that the Afghani fundamentalists have told ISIS, which is predominantly Sunni, to avoid ‘disturbing’ other sectors of Islam.
Taliban commanders also told ISIS fighters to respect the rule of law in their newly established Islamic state.
The declaration was uploaded to one of the Taliban’s websites this week, and although it does not name ISIS directly, it clearly refers to them. The message said: “It is worthy for a shurah (consultation) council to be formed from the leaders of all the jihadi factions and the distinguished people among the experts and the scholars in Sham (Syria) in order to solve their conflicts.
“Muslims also should avoid extremism in religion, and judging others without evidence, and distrusting one another.
“They should avoid conflict and dispute, and not think their opinions are better than others. Mercy and compassion should prevail.”
While they ruled Afghanistan, the Taliban were notorious for their religious extremism. Edicts banned listening to music and flying kites while women were forced to wear burqas, covering their bodies from head to toe. Adulteresses also faced summary executions.
Last month, ISIS declared the territory they have captured a ‘caliphate’ with their leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, as ‘Caliph’. Al-Baghdadi has proclaimed himself the leader of all the world’s Muslims, calling on them to come to the caliphate and join him.
Pakistani and Afghani Taliban commanders, as well as other Islamists throughout the world, have declined to comment on al-Baghdadi’s claim.
The Pakistani Taliban is currently on the back foot after the country’s military launched a campaign against their strongholds last month. Drone strikes have hit them hard, with senior leaders being taken out and supplies destroyed.