Afghanistan’s deputy minister of intelligence bragged on national television about his role in a 2018 suicide bombing in Kabul that killed over 100 people.
During an appearance on TOLONews Jan. 28, Taj Mir Jawad took credit for directing the attack, along with other attacks, including car and suicide bombings.
The 2018 attack involved an ambulance full of explosives traveling to an intersection in Kabul, where it detonated and killed over 100 civilians, including women and children.
Two U.S. intelligence officials, who wish to remain anonymous, told the Long War Journal Taj Mir Jawad went by the name of Jawad Sargar during his time as a Taliban commander who helped lead the Kabul Attack Network along with known jihadist Daud, or Dawood.
Tajuden Soroush, a senior international correspondent for Iran International, posted a clip of the interview to Twitter.
Suhail Shaheen, head of the Political Office in Doha, refuted Jawad’s claim, telling Fox News Digital that “killing of civilians has never been the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan’s (IEA) policy. We refute this.”
“The IEA spokesman had denied having carried out the 2018 bombing,” stressed Shaheen, who previously served as spokesman for the Taliban during its insurgency.
The Kabul Attack Network used personnel and resources from the Taliban, al Qaeda and a number of Islamic movements across Uzbekistan and Turkistan to carry out attacks around Afghanistan’s capital city.
Bill Roggio of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and managing editor of The Long War Journal, wrote on Twitter that the group even found support from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran, which he claims directly funded the Taliban and al Qaeda.
“The IRGC was financing some of the most spectacular attacks in the heart of Afghanistan against U.S., NATO and Afghan security forces, as well as civilians,” Roggio wrote.
Jawad took his post as deputy intelligence minister shortly after the Taliban took control of Afghanistan following the hasty withdrawal of U.S. troops from the country.
According to The Long War Journal, he reports to Abdul Haq Wasiq, an ex-Guantanamo Bay detainee who served as the Taliban’s deputy director general of intelligence prior to the 9/11 attacks. Wasiq now serves as the director of intelligence for the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.