Norwegian Children Join Islamic State in Syria: Reports

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Some Norwegian children have traveled to Syria to assist the Islamic State (IS) in their fight as the airstrikes against the militant group continue to rise in number, Norway’s The Local reported Wednesday.

MOSCOW, September 24 (RIA Novosti) - Some Norwegian children have traveled to Syria to assist the Islamic State (IS) in their fight as the airstrikes against the militant group continue to rise in number, Norway’s The Local reported Wednesday.

“The trends one finds in Germany also exist in Norway. [PST] have examples of young children having travelled or who have tried travelling to Syria. One cannot exclude that there are some down there we do not know about,” Martin Bernsen, communication consultant for PST (Politiets Sikkerhetstjeneste - The Norwegian Police Security Service), was quoted by The Local as saying.

Bernsen stated the number of Norwegian children having traveled to Syria could be less than 10. He also expressed concerns that the parents of the children might have secretly aided their children in their travel.

“When they are under 18 years old, we can warn their parents. We have examples of parents who think it's ok and parents who don’t think it's ok,” The Local quoted Bernsen as saying.

Earlier this month, Germany stated that hundreds of its nationals had traveled to Syria to assist the IS militants in their fight in Syria and Iraq. According to the head of the German intelligence service BVF Georg Maassen, tens of children were among the travelers.

The IS, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), has been fighting the Syrian government since 2012. In June 2014, the group extended its attacks to northern and western Iraq, declaring a caliphate on the territories over which it had control.

The United States unveiled earlier this month its strategy to defeat the jihadist group establishing a multinational coalition. On Tuesday, the US-led coalition performed the first series of airstrikes targeting Islamic State positions in Syria.

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