Published On: Sun, Mar 3rd, 2019

Austrian IS Fighters Caught In Syria

A video in which the young man states that he came from Vienna is circulating on the internet. On Sunday, the last IS stronghold in Syria could fall.

Austrian Joined IS

Kurdish soldiers have apparently arrested an Austrian supporter of the Islamic State terrorist militia in Syria. On Facebook, a corresponding video circulates, recorded in a warehouse, reports the ORF. In it, a young man states to come from Vienna.

Terrorism researcher Thomas Schmidinger describes the source of the video on the ORF as reliable. It is a man whose family is from Turkey. However, his citizenship can not yet be verified.

The 100 IS-trailers from Austria Federal Agency for State Protection and Counter-Terrorism (BVT) should still be in Syria and Iraq loud. One-third of them, ie around 30 people, are Austrian citizens.

Currently, a 20-year-old Viennese and her almost two-year-old son are already in detention in a The Kurdish prison camp in northern Syria. The Austrian fled 2017 with her baby from Raqqa, the then fiercely competitive and now conquered capital of the caliphate. Since then she wants to return to Austria. ‘

After US President Donald Trump has called for EU countries to withdraw imprisoned IS supporters from Syria, a dispute arose in Austria over how to deal with people. The government has been reluctant. Interior Minister Herbert Kickl even decided not to take back – including women and children.

The terrorist militia is coming under increasing pressure in its former, self-proclaimed caliphate. On Sunday, the last stronghold of the Islamists in the village of Baghouz could fall on the border with Iraq, the Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces announced on Sunday. Several hundred IS fighters would have entrenched themselves there in tunnels. In most cases, these are foreigners.

The SDF offensive had begun on Thursday. The fall of Baghouz would be a milestone in the fight against IS, which seized large parts of Iraq and Syria in 2014 and proclaimed a caliph across state borders. Since 2017, the IS has been displaced from more and more areas. If Baghouz is taken by the SDF rebels, only a remote, sparsely populated region west of the Euphrates remains in the hands of the IS fighters, which is located in the territory controlled by the Syrian army.