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Syrian rebel groups sending children into war, says rights group

Published on Jun 23, 2014 5:13 PM
 
 A rebel fighter walks through a hole in a wall on the frontline of Ramouseh, an area located beside Aleppo Artillery school June 22, 2014. Militant Islamist groups in Syria are recruiting children as young as 15 and sending them into battle after promising them a free education, a Human Rights Watch (HRW) report said on Monday, June 23, 2014. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Militant Islamist groups in Syria are recruiting children as young as 15 and sending them into battle after promising them a free education, a Human Rights Watch (HRW) report said on Monday.

The report said the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which has made rapid territorial gains across the border in Iraq, had given children weapons training in Syria and told them to carry out suicide bombings.

Citing personal accounts, the rights group also found evidence of children being mobilised by the more moderate Western-backed Free Syrian Army, the Al-Qaeda-affiliated Nusra Front, the Islamic Front coalition and security forces in Kurdish-controlled areas.

"The horrors of Syria's armed conflict are only made worse by throwing children into the front lines," said author of the report Priyanka Motaparthy.

 
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