Child warriors tormented as they are forced into ISIS

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The Islamic state of Iraq and Syria has been forcing children to attend a training camp, a form of brainwashing, according to multiple news outlets.

Some told the story of Yasir, a 15-year-old boy who is allegedly strapped into an explosive vest, handed a pistol and an AK-47, as he stands alert with a radio to stand guard at an ISIS base in eastern Syrian city of Deir Ezzor.

Yasir is not the child’s first name, according to CNN, but he is a real ISIS warrior.Yasir has followed his own father in the Al Qaeda-linked front, and when ISIS took over the area, they swore their allegiance.

Yasir said to CNN, “I spent a month without seeing my family or anyone that I knew. It was forbidden to see or speak to anyone.”

Note: Darkest grey is territory controlled by ISIS
(Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

The child soldier recalled that there were about 100 children in the base that he was stationed, where the children were isolated from everything that they knew and loved, unable to see or even speak to their families for a month, according to reports from several news outlets.

The children were put through intense religious practices as they were put through daily lessons on the violent form of Islam that ISIS swears by.

The rigorous military training was part of their daily routine as Yasir explained to CNN reporters, “We used to crawl under webbing. There was fire above it, and we would be firing our weapons. We would jump through large metal rings and the trainers would be firing at our feet and telling us if we stop we will be shot.”

Yasir told CNN that after they left the training camp, they were allowed to go home, but were had to report regularly for duty. He admitted that his mother begged him to stay, saying that he had no business being part of ISIS. His father began to tell him that they were not on the “religious track.” Yasir said, “I am discovering over time they have no religion.”

ABC News interviewed another young boy’s father, who explained how in Ar-Raqqa, ISIS’s Syrian stronghold, children are “slowly being forced into lives under the Sunni militant group’s notoriously brutal interpretation of Sharia law.”

ISIS child soldiers are being introduced to the foundations of their brand of Islam. As ABC News said, boys are taken to adult military camps where they are trained to use arms and fight. If parents try to oppose their son’s draft ISIS fighters threaten to kill them. Many families have fled to the Turkish city of Sanliurfa to avoid forced child conscriptions in Ar-Raqqa.

Yasir had told CNN he wished he never told ISIS, that he had a choice, unlike the other children that are manipulated, forced to live under their rule, and lured into this extremist organization.

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