Dragged Into Daesh: 40 Swedish Children in Clutches of Terrorist Group

© AP Photo / Manu Brabo, FileFILE - In this file photo taken Friday, Oct. 26, 2012, displaced Syrian children gather barefoot in a refugee camp near Atma, Idlib province, Syria
FILE - In this file photo taken Friday, Oct. 26, 2012, displaced Syrian children gather barefoot in a refugee camp near Atma, Idlib province, Syria - Sputnik International
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Around 40 children have been taken by their parents from Sweden to live in Daesh-controlled territory, Sveriges Radio reported.

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Dozens of Swedish nationals who have traveled to Iraq and Syria to support the infamous terrorist group Daesh (ISIL/ISIS) have taken their children with them, Sweden's national coordinator against violent extremism told Sveriges Radio on Tuesday.

The national coordinator's committee secretary, Yassin Ekdah, said that an estimated 40 children under the age of ten have been taken to join violent extremist groups, either by their mother or both parents.

"That is a low estimate. I could imagine that there are many, many more," Ekdah said.

​'New alarm: There are at least 40 Swedish children in IS (Daesh),' Aftonbladet reported. 

The national coordinator also believes that some single women have traveled to Iraq and Syria and consequently had children with Daesh fighters. It is unknown how many such children there are, but they will automatically receive Swedish citizenship. 

Ekdah said that some children have now returned to Sweden after living in Daesh-controlled territory for up to two years.

"They see killing as part of everyday life, they experience the fallout from bombs and are taught that killing people for having a different faith is justified. There are also cases where mothers have been victims of rape when the child is present."

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Despite often exhibiting signs of trauma, these children are forced by their parents to keep silent about their experiences and don't receive the help they need.

"It is apparent in their play, it is often morbid and deals with death and beheadings. They have a lot of nightmares, anxiety, fear and above all a lot of aggression."

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