TEHRAN, Jan. 30 (Xinhua) -- Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Tuesday that the United States has been relocating the so-called Islamic State (IS) to Afghanistan to justify its military presence in the region.
By transferring the IS terror group from Iraq and Syria to Afghanistan, the United States seeks "to justify the continuation of its presence in the region and to create security for the Zionist regime (of Israel)," Khamenei said according to the state TV.
"The same hands that created Daesh (IS) as a tool to oppress people in Syria and Iraq and carry out crimes against them are today seeking to transfer Daesh to Afghanistan after its defeats there," he was quoted as saying.
The United States "is the main source of insecurity in Afghanistan," he said, adding that the recent killings in Afghanistan represent an early stage in the scheme of relocating IS to the country.
Khamenei said Washington's proxies have been directly or indirectly involved in the killings perpetrated in Afghanistan over the past 20 years in the name of religion. "To the U.S.-backed terrorists, Shiite and Sunni (Muslims) are no different, and civilians, including Shiites and Sunnis, are their target," he stressed.
Washington wants to advance their own political and economic agendas through destabilizing Afghanistan, he added.