A voice for newcomers in Sweden

Sweden's terror travellers: in stats

Mosul on May 5th after fighting between Iraqi forces and Isis. Photo: AP Photo/Bram Janssen

Published: 14.Jun.2017 16:36 hrs

Almost one in five who have travelled from Sweden to join militant jihadi groups in Iraq and Syria is younger than 19, according to a new report.

Sweden's security services Säpo estimates that around 300 people travelled to Iraq and Syria to join militant groups between 2012 and 2016. Researchers at the Swedish Defence University have looked more closely at 267 of them for a study on foreign fighters which sheds unique light on a key debate in Europe.

They found that a total of 18 percent of people who left Sweden to fight for jihadi groups were 19 or younger, compared to 60 percent who were aged between 20 to 29. Most of them were men (76 percent) and 24 percent were women, but the number of women taking part in the armed conflict rose from only a handful in 2012 to making up around 40 percent of foreign fighters in the conflict zone in 2014 and 2015.

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