According to experts the video is authentic and was shot in Syria. It shows 23 boys between 8 and 12 years old, also from Malaysia and the Philippines. Their trainer is Faiz Abu Indunesy, a sniper sought at home. Intelligence expert: "The government should be concerned that so many children have managed to enter Syria."
ihadJakarta (AsiaNews) - A video posted by the Islamic State shows some Indonesian children practicing shooting hand guns and AK-47 rifles, before setting fire to their passports. The boys, all aged 8 to 12 years, are being trained by Abu Faiz al Indunesy: the militiaman is sought by Jakarta and operates as a sniper in Syria for terrorists.
The video lasts about 20 minutes. It shows 23 children (called "Caliphate puppies"), some of whom are from Malaysia and the Philippines. The film also contains phrases that are direct threats to States in Southeast Asia, which "will not be able to defeat" IS.
According Ridlwan Habib, intelligence and terrorism expert at the University of Indonesia, the good quality of the images and the sound indicates that the video is original. The presence of children of different nationalities proves that it was shot in Syria. "The Tourist Office - he said - should make a serious assessment of why so many Indonesian children have managed to enter Syria."
The authorities are concerned that the video is trending on the internet and the influence it may have on the younger generation: "It is a serious matter and we are sorry," said Brig Amar Joey Boy, head of police public relations. "Now everything can be shared, and anyone can make propaganda online." Jakarta is planning to close the border to arrivals from Syria, in order to block the return of trained militiamen.
IS has been already operating in the country for some time. An IS terrorist who wants to prevail over other South-east Asian terrorist groups, has been blamed for the attacks on 14 January in Jakarta.
Indonesian authorities estimate that IS has about a thousand active supporters, a very small number considering that the country it is the most populous Islamic nation in the world with 250 million people (87 per cent Muslim). So far, some 600 Indonesians have reportedly gone to Syria to join the caliphate. Fifty are said to have died. Instead the BNPT anti-terrorism agency says at least 149 have returned from the Middle East.
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