A group of child soldiers trained by ISIS. File photo

ARA News 

HASAKAH – The radical group of Islamic State (ISIS) has recently launched a campaign of arrests targeting minors, cracking down on people in areas under its control across Syria, local sources reported.

This comes amid intense airstrikes conducted by the U.S.-led coalition forces and the Russian warplanes against ISIS strongholds in the war-torn country.

Speaking to ARA News in Hasakah, Jaber Mohammad, a displaced citizen from the ISIS de facto capital of Raqqa, said: “Daesh (ISIS) has imposed conscription on the people aged 14 to 40, preventing all those under 40 from leaving Raqqa province.”

“Hundreds of teenagers have been forced to join military training camps of ISIS to be prepared for conducting terrorist attacks and participating in the battles,” Mohammad told ARA News.

“This comes after the large losses the group has suffered under airstrikes led by the U.S. and Russia, beside the battles with the Kurdish forces and allied rebels.”   

“Families of ISIS militants have evacuated their houses in the city (Raqqa) and headed to the surrounding villages in a bit to avoid attacks by the Kurdish forces and the mounting airstrikes by the U.S.-led coalition and Russia,” he said. 

Another displaced man from the ISIS-held Syrian province of Deir ez-Zor, who preferred to be named Abu Ayman, told ARA News: “ISIS has arrested dozens of underage boys and forced them to join the battlefronts, vowing those who hide to be mercilessly punished.”

Local reports from the ISIS-held areas in Syria indicate that the popularity of the ISIS self-declared caliphate has dramatically declined amid the group’s increasing brutality against civilians. 

Reporting by: Qehreman Miste

Source: ARA News

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