How ISIS Recruits Children

ISIS not only consist of adult soldiers and terrorist but young children as well, 11 year-old Abu Imara al Omri, for example, is one of ISIS’ many child soldiers who have died. Abu Imara al Omri was captured on footage for ISIS propaganda where he kneels down to kiss his father’s hand before he blows himself up in a truck full of explosives taking the village of Ghazl, Syria. CNN was unable to identify the authenticity of the video. Child soldiers tend to appear to be treated no differently than regular adult soldiers, CNN explains. Findings indicate that eliminating ISIS will become much more complicated seeing as ISIS’ use of child soldiers will affect how we combat against them and disarm them. Children aren’t being used to replace adult soldiers but are integrated into ISIS’ military operations—often with parental consent.

There are a variety of ways children soldiers may die while serving ISIS, CNN displayed alarming statistics showing that 39 percent died detonating a bomb on a vehicle, 33 percent were killed as foot soldiers, 4 percent killed themselves while committing mass casualty attacks, and 6 percent died as propagandists. Researchers from Georgia State University have been working with Twitter and ISIS channels on Telegram to keep track of the children’s ages, dates, and nationalities. It is suspected that ISIS is recruiting child soldiers to create and train the future generation of ISIS and describes its child soldiers as the “cubs of the caliphate.”  In a recent publication of their English language magazine, mothers of sons were encouraged to sacrifice their sons for the Islamic state handing them over to serve ISIS.

 

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