Thursday, October 26, 2017

Iran Is Sending Afghan Children To Fight For Assad In Syria

The article begins with the story of Abu Fazel, an 18-year-old Afghan refugee living in Germany. He left for Germany after living in Iran to avoid being sent by the Iranian government to fight for Assad. There have been several known cases of Afghan teens being used to fight in the Syrian Civil War but we don't know just how many. Using children under the age of 15 in military conflict is considered a war crime. Iran is in an alliance with the Assad government and is looking to recruit more soldiers to fight Sunni extremists, so they target young Afghan refugees, many of whom are Shia Hazara. Abu Fazel discusses the ways in which the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and the Islamic paramilitary organization Basij attempt to recruit young Afghan children to fight for them. Fazel's cousin went to fight and ended up getting killed, and Fazel decided to flee right before his training was supposed to begin.

Patrick Schaefer

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