Afghan Official: Islamic State Present in at Least 3 Provinces

In this undated file photo released by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, militants of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave its flags in a convoy. (Militant website via AP, file)
In this undated file photo released by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, militants of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave its flags in a convoy. (Militant website via AP, file)

KABUL, Afghanistan -- An Afghan official says the Islamic State group now has a presence in three provinces but that the government is determined to drive it out.

Zafar Hashimi, the Afghan president's deputy spokesman, said Sunday that the group -- which controls large areas of Iraq and Syria -- is active in the eastern Nangarhar, western Farah and southern Helmand provinces.

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Hashimi says security forces have launched successful operations against the IS group but gave no further details.

The Taliban, which have been at war with the government for nearly 14 years and are also active in the three provinces, have warned the IS group to stay out of the country. Both groups want Islamic rule but the Taliban do not recognize the IS group's self-styled caliphate.

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