KABUL-The militants of the Islamic State terrorist group (banned in Russia) have gone underground in Afghanistan, with the size of the organization’s sleeper cells in the country currently amounting to less than 10,000, Mohammad Mohaqiq, the second deputy chief executive of Afghanistan, told Sputnik in an interview. “Takfiris [followers of a radical Islamist ideology] and IS terrorists do not have official presence in the provinces of Faryab, Jowzjan and Sar-e Pol, however, despite this, they are hiding in sleeper cells, there are also a number of camps, where the foreigners are undergoing training, but they do not openly declare their presence,” Mohaqiq said. He added that the terrorists operating in the country had suffered considerable casualties in fights with the Taliban radical movement. “At some point the number of [IS terrorists] totaled up to 10,000, however, I believe that currently the number is lower, because they have suffered sever blows from Taliban and sustained considerable losses in Nangarhar,” Mohaqiq indicated.

According to Mohaqiq, the Taliban movement currently might control about 30 percent of the country’s territory.

“There is no exact statistics regarding Taliban’s control over territories in Afghanistan. The majority of people believe that [the Taliban] controls about 30 percent [of the territories], there are also unsafe areas, where the threat level is increased, and about 60 percent of the territories are government-controlled,” Mohaqiq indicated.

Afghanistan has been struggling to achieve stability for years as central authorities have been fighting the Taliban radical movement and a number of terrorist organizations, including the Islamic State terrorist group (banned in Russia) that are attempting to gain a foothold in the country.