Foreign Terrorist Organization Designation of ISIL - Khorasan (ISIL-K)

Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
January 14, 2016


The Department of State has announced the designation of ISIL-K as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act. The consequences of the FTO designation include a prohibition against knowingly providing, or attempting or conspiring to provide, material support or resources to this organization. The Department of State took this action in consultation with the Departments of Justice and the Treasury.

ISIL-K announced its formation on January 10, 2015. The group is based in the Afghanistan/Pakistan region and is composed primarily of former members of Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan and the Afghan Taliban. The senior leadership of ISIL-K has pledged allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIL. This pledge was accepted in late January 2015 and since then ISIL-K has carried out suicide bombings, small arms attacks and kidnappings in eastern Afghanistan against civilians and Afghan National Security and Defense Forces, and claimed responsibility for May 2015 attacks on civilians in Karachi, Pakistan.

The imposition of sanctions by the United States against terrorists is an important element of our counterterrorism efforts. Designations of terrorists and terrorist groups expose and isolate individuals and organizations, and result in denial of access to the U.S. financial system. Moreover, designations can assist or complement the law enforcement actions of other U.S. agencies and other governments.