United States Declares Hizb-e-Islami Commanders as “Specially Designated Global Terrorists”

Islamabad: The U.S. State Department announced to include two afghan commanders of Hizb-e-Islami Afghanistan as “Specially Designated Global Terrorists”. Both Abdullah Nowbahar and Abdul Saboor, are explosive experts for the Afghan extremist group Hezb-e Islami Headed by Engineer Gulbuddin Hikmatyar, claimed the statement. Earlier in February 26, 2015 the U.S.  Rewards for Justice (RFJ) released the sketches of both and announced a reward of up to $3 million for information on Abdul Saboor and up to $2 million on Abdullah Nowbahar respectively.

According to The Department of State has designated Abdullah Nowbahar and Abdul Saboor as Specially Designated Global Terrorists (SDGTs) under section 1(b) of Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, which imposes sanctions on foreign persons that have committed, or pose a serious risk of committing, acts of terrorism that threaten the security of U.S. nationals or the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States,” according to an official statement.

In its “Operation Cyclone” program, the CIA funded and armed Islamist extremist militias in Afghanistan, known as the mujahideen. Through Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence, or ISI, the CIA helped groups like Hezb-e Islami Gulbuddin fight the Soviet Union, after it intervened at the request of Afghanistan’s socialist government in 1978.

The statement by the Department of State further added that the designations blocks all property subject to U.S. jurisdiction in which Abdullah Nowbahar and Abdul Saboor have any interest and prohibits U.S. persons from engaging in any transactions with Nowbahar and Saboor.

According to Department of State, Abdullah Nowbahar and Abdul Saboor are explosive experts for Hezb-e-Islami Gulbuddin (HIG). Both Nowbahar and Saboor participated in the September 18, 2012 attack on a bus carrying foreign employees of Kabul International Airport that killed 12 people.

Abdul Saboor is also responsible for a May 2013 suicide attack in Kabul that destroyed a U.S. armored vehicle, killing two soldiers and four U.S. civilian contractors; eight Afghans – including two children – were also killed and another 37 were wounded.

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