RAQQA – An Austrian teenager who fled to Raqqa, Syria in order to join the Islamic fundamentalist terror organization Islamic State was beaten to death after attempting to escape the ISIS stronghold, an Austrian newspaper reports.
Austrian newspapers have reported that Samra Kesinovic, 17, who fled to Syria along with her friend Sabina Selimovic, has been beaten to death for attempting to leave Raqqa, although official government sources are refusing to comment on individual cases.
According to The Daily Mail, the pair began their journey to Syria when they flew to the Turkish capital of Ankara in early 2014. They moved quickly to the southern region of Adana near the Syrian border.
They were quickly married off to Islamic State fighters soon after arriving in Raqqa.
“We received information just recently about two 15-year-old girls, of Bosnian origin, who left Austria, where they had been living in recent years; and everyone, the families and the intelligence services of the two countries, is looking for them,” according to David Scharia, a senior Israeli expert of the United Nations Security Council’s Counter-Terrorism Committee.
“Both were recruited by Islamic State. One was killed in the fighting in Syria, the other has disappeared,” he added.
His confirmation comes three months after the Austrian government said it had informed both sets of parents of the girls that one of them might have been killed.
According to Austrian authorities as many as 130 people from Austria are now believed to be fighting as jihadists abroad. Experts say at least half of them originally come from the Caucasus region of Russia and were granted asylum in Austria after the bloody Chechen war.
Austrian Interior Ministry spokesman Alexander Marakovits said they were noticing an increasing problem with youngsters wanting to leave the country to fight in the ranks of ISIS.
He said: ‘If we can catch them before they leave we have the chance to work with their parents and other institutions to bring the youngsters out of the sphere of influence that prompted them to act in this way the first place.
‘Once they have left the country, even if they then changed their minds, it is then almost impossible to get them back.’