IS with 16-year-old sniper? Iraqi army captures five German women in Mosul

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The Iraqi army has arrested a group of female fighters in the ranks of the “Islamic State” in Mosul. Five of them turned out to be German citizens. One IS member is said to be 16 years old and member of the terrorist militia for a year.

Iraqi troops last week captured a group of 20 female IS members in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul, the German news portal “Die Welt” reports on Monday 17th July 2017.

The report shows that at least five of the women who were arrested are German nationals. The other women are from Russia, Turkey, Canada, Syria, Libya and the Caucasus.

The women were hiding in tunnels built by the IS beneath the former metropolis of Mosul. As per reports in Iraqi media, security forces seized weapons and suicide vestures in the hiding places.

The 16-year-old girl Linda W. from the federal state of Saxony is to be among the five women from Germany, “Die Welt” writes with reference to security sources.

Because of her poor knowledge of Arabic, the security forces initially assumed that this was a kidnapped Yezidish girl, The Telegraph explains.

The German Federal Foreign Office has not yet been able to confirm the reports on the German IS supporters who have been arrested. “The Foreign Office does not yet have any reliable information about the women with German passports who allegedly were arrested in Mosul or Baghdad”, the news programme Die Tagesschau quotes the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Berlin.

The senior public prosecutor from Dresden, Lorenz Haase, meanwhile said there are indications that one of the suspects is in fact the girl from Pulsnitz near Dresden.

The girl Linda W. had converted to Islam and radicalised herself. She traveled alone to Istanbul in Turkey with fake ID documents. In the summer of 2016 the girl travelled on to Syria. The Police suspects that Linda W. had fallen in love with an IS member. The man persuaded her to join him in Syria.

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The parents turned to the Police immediately after her disappearance. The authorities launched an international search for the student.

On Monday, the Landeskriminalamt (LKA) [State Criminal Police] of Saxony said that there were “new details in the case of Linda W. who are currently being evaluated”.

According to the LKA, Linda W. had already been in contact with IS supporters when she was still in Germany. She came into contact with the terrorist group through the Internet, the German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle wrote. Her friends told the Police that she started learning Arabic, the news portal Daily Mail writes. She named herself Maryam.

Vian Dakhil, a Yezidi member of the Iraqi Council of Deputies, confirmed the identity of the German girl on Twitter. The deputy published pictures taken of the alleged Germans during their capture. Dakhil claimed she was a sniper in the service of the IS. The mother is said to have “not denied” that the girl in the photo is Linda.

A total of 930 Germans had left their homeland in 2011 to join forces in Syria or Iraq. About 20 percent of those who left were women, the President of the German Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz (Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitutional Protection), Hans-Georg Maaßen, disclosed in July. A report by the authority, published in July, acknowledged that young people in Germany are developing a “rapid readiness to follow the order to kill”.

The report also warns that Islamic “terrorist incidents may happen at any time in Germany”. According to a survey conducted in 2016, the number of Islamists living in Germany is 24,400.

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