Grandmother Tries To Bring Pregnant Daughter Of ISIS Fighter Back To Australia
The grandmother of a heavily pregnant Australian teenager trapped in Syria after being taken there when she was 13 years old by her IS terrorist father is trying to secure the girl's safe return home.
Notorious IS terrorist Khaled Sharrouf, described by Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton as the "Australian face" of IS, fled Australia with his wife and five children to fight with the extremist group in 2013.
The children's mother, Tara Nettleton, is believed to have died in 2015 of a medical condition and Sharrouf was killed in a coalition airstrike in 2017 along with his two sons, aged 11 and 12 years old at the time.
Sharrouf's three surviving children are currently being held in the Kurdish-controlled al-Hawl camp, which is populated by an estimated 72,000 refugees, including 40,000 children.
Sharrouf's eldest daughter Zaynab is 17 years old and currently pregnant with her third child. Her grandmother, Karen Nettleton, who is based in Sydney, has flown to Syria in a desperate attempt to have her granddaughter, her siblings, and her children released from al-Hawl.
Nettleton has told the ABC that there are serious concerns for Zaynab's health and that both she and her 16-year-old sister Hoda have sustained injuries.
Nettleton described her granddaughter as looking like "a skeleton" and stated that the pregnant teenager was malnourished and suffering from constant diarrhoea.
ISIS lost its final stronghold in Syria last month after Kurdish and Arab soldiers backed by US, British and French special forces liberated Baghouz in eastern Syria from the terrorist organisation.
This battle represented the end of the caliphate, the ISIS state that had been declared by the group in 2014.
This attempt is the third time Nettleton has flown to the region since 2016 and she has pleaded with the Australian Government to help her return the orphaned children of Sharrouf home, stressing that they do not pose a threat to Australia's safety.
However, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has asserted that the family is not Australia's responsibility and stated earlier this week that he is "not going to put one Australian life at risk to try and extract people from these dangerous situations."
Morrison added, "I think it's appalling that Australians have gone and fought against our value and our way or life ... I think it's even more despicable that they put their children in the middle of it."
Nettleton has been advised that if she is able to extract the children to an Australian embassy then the government will provide emergency travel documents to help the children return to Australia.
There are allegedly 19 children amongst Australian families being held in al-Hawl camp.