MOSCOW, December 9 (Sputnik) — Radical Australians who have joined the IS in Syria and Iraq are exploited and used as cannon fodder in severe fighting according to Australian officials, the AFP reported on Tuesday.
The IS members “are simply using them as frontline cannon fodder, suicide bombers and propaganda tools," Attorney General George Brand said in a statement. He also added that many of those who travel to Syria and Iraq are attracted by the vision of a “noble battle” against oppressors, but in fact are used as pawns in religious game and propaganda machne.
According to Australian officials, the death toll among Australians fighting overseas is constantly rising. 20 Australian citizens are reported to have been killed in Syria and Iraq. Previously, the government had confirmed the deaths of 15 of its citizens, with the number constantly increasing due to fierce fighting near the Syrian town of Kobani.
Devastating clashes between IS extremists and Kobani Kurds, seeking to defend their hometown, have lasted for three months. According to Reuters, over 200,000 people have sought asylum in neighboring Turkey and other countries due to the conflict.