Ittehad Islami (Afghanistan)

Country: Afghanistan
Details of Formation: The PGM became pro-government in 1992 until the Taliban rule from 1996 to 2001. After opposing the interim government in 2002, it was pro-government again in 2003 and its leader joined the Loya Jirga on 14 December 2003.
Details of Termination: --
Purpose: Based on the group’s inclusion in the “Peshawar Seven” under the Islamic Dwah Organization of Afghanistan, it can be inferred that the group’s task was to fight the People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA) government and communist Soviet forces. Later, as part of the Northern Alliance, it was used to fight the Taliban.
Organisation: The group was part of the Islamic Dwah Organization of Afghanistan and led by Professor Abdul Rasul Sayyaf who is said to have held significant power over Karzai and political appointments in the country.
Weapons and Training: --
Size: --
Reason for Membership: Due to a component of radical Sunni religious ideology, it is reported that the group attracted fanatic Arab volunteers. Another potential incentive to join is reported to be loyalty to the Pathan ethnicity.
Treatment of Civilians: The group was involved in violent clashes with the Hezb-i Wahdat forces, which escalated into a war. These events led to the death of 70 people in a single operation in 1993 (massacre in Kabul, Afshar operation). Afterwards, the PGM is reported to have kidnapped as many as 900 people, 700 of which were not returned and 200 were set free for ransom. Members were also involved in robberies accompanied by rape and the abduction of women.
Other Information: The PGM was part of an alliance of resistance movements when Afghanistan was under Soviet control and there is evidence that it was supported by Saudi Arabia. Later, as part of the Northern Alliance, it was also supported by the US (2001). Members of the group consisted predominantly of ethnic Pathans. In 2005, Ittehad Islami was registered as a political party and aligned with the Karzai government, over which it is reported to have had significant power due to its military strength. It also took part in negotiations with the UN and the US.
References: Information was taken from news sources listed in the PGMD.

Wikipedia. “Islamic Dawah Organisation of Afghanistan”