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AFP
February 11, 2019

Russia 'repatriates' 27 IS children from Iraq

World

AFP
February 11, 2019

BAGHDAD: A Russian official said Sunday that Moscow had repatriated a fresh batch of children whose mothers are being held in Iraq for belonging to the Islamic State group.

"Twenty-seven Russian children have been repatriated from Baghdad," a Russian foreign ministry official said.Thirty other children were sent back to Moscow in late December. The fathers of the children were killed during three years of fighting between the jihadists and Iraqi troops, the official said.

Anna Kuznetsova, Russia's envoy for the rights of children, confirmed the report, according to Russia´s TASS state news agency. She said the 27 children, aged from four to 13 and from 10 different regions in Russia, and were due to arrive home Sunday night. IS seized large swathes of Iraq in a lightning 2014 offensive, before the government dislodged the jihadists from urban centres and eventually declared victory in December 2017. The Kremlin announced in early January that 115 Russian children aged below ten -- along with eight aged between 11 and 17 -- were still in Iraq.

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