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20 Australians die fighting for IS groups


Canberra- No fewer than 20 Australians have been killed while being used as “cannon fodder’’ fighting alongside Islamic State (IS) militants in Syria and Iraq, Australian Attorney-Ggeneral, George Brandis revealed on Tuesday.
Brandis confirmed that nearly one in five Australians that have joined IS groups have been killed, with terrorist organisations using Australians as “bombers and propaganda tools.’’

The attorney general said that Western recruits were being convinced they were joining a religious crusade, only to be exploited when they arrived in Syria and Iraq.

Brandis’ comments came as the government revealed the number of Australians killed had risen over recent weeks; five or six had died in a conflict in Kobane on the Syrian-Turkish border.

“The government is aware of around 20 Australians who have died in the conflict in Syria and Iraq,’’ Brandis tsaid.

Report says that no fewer than 70 Australians remain in the Middle East, fighting for IS groups, while a further 20 have returned home after traveling to Syria and Iraq.

However, Brandis urged citizens of Australia and other Western nationals to see the reality of what joining IS groups entails.

“Australian youths, and many young men and women from Western countries, are being lured by the falsehood of a noble battle against an oppressive enemy.

“In reality, they are merely taking part in acts of thoughtless violence, in many cases against innocent civilians, on behalf of ISIL, which is intent on recklessly enslaving, raping and murdering those with a contrary view to their own,’’ he said.

One of the 20 deaths cited was that of Mohammad Ali Baryalei, a Sydney man, accused of plotting to murder random members of the public in Sydney and Brisbane.

Australian Defense Minister, David Johnston had cast doubts over his reported death in November, saying it was more likely that he was alive. (Xinhua/NAN)

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