A 13-year-old boy from Germany was caught on the Turkish-Syrian border on his way to joining the Islamic State (ISIS).
Authorities have returned the boy, now 14, to Bavaria after he started his long journey nine months ago to join the Islamic state in Syria. After several months in a Turkish detention centre he has now returned home.
The teen, who grew up in Munich, was looking to go on jihad with the fighters of ISIS and expected to be sent back to Germany to carry out potential terrorist attacks reports Die Welt.
A spokesman for the German Federal police said that the boy, whose family are said to originally be from Iraq, flew from Ankara on Thursday night. Accompanied by Turkish police for the entirety of the flight, he was handed over to the custody of police in Munich where he remains.
At the airport he was allowed a brief visit from his mother, though the Munich youth office refused to give her custody of her son until a full investigation can be completed.
Media sources have found little information about the identity of the teen radical, but have reported that he is currently being held in a youth detention facility in Munich. A police spokesman said that he will also be vigorously questioned by officials of the German Federal Security agency for any ties to the Islamic State he may have.
Reports have also suggested that the boy used his family connections in Turkey to aid his plan to join the terrorist group. It is said that the 13-year-old’s aunt actively helped him and tried to smuggle him across the border from Turkey into Syria.
His aunt is said to have left him at the border where he was arrested by police shortly after. The police were able to arrest the aunt soon after they found out about her involvement, and are looking to charge her with supporting a terrorist group as well.
The boy is said to have been radicalized by Salafist preachers in Munich long before he made the attempted journey to Syria. Only a few weeks before he left the country the boy was apparently handing out leaflets on behalf of a local Salafist group as part of a campaign in the centre of the city.
ISIS has shown no regard for the innocence of children in it’s global jihad and has no problems recruiting children into it’s ranks. In Syria ISIS has founded training camps for children where they use dolls to teach them the proper way to behead someone.
Some reports are even more horrific, telling that the Islamic State has been encouraging young boys to play football with the decapitated heads of their victims in a bid to desensitize them to violence.