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Criminal case opened against 17-year-old Muscovite who joined IS terrorist group in Syria

December 22, 2015, 19:31 UTC+3

There are plans to put the suspect on an international wanted list

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© AP Photo/Bram Janssen, Archive

MOSCOW, December 22. /TASS/. A criminal case has been opened in Moscow against a 17-year-old Muscovite who left for Syria and joined the Islamic State (IS) terrorist organization (banned in Russia), a senior investigator told TASS Tuesday.

"Investigative bodies of the Main Investigations Directorate of the [Russian] Investigative Committee in Moscow have launched criminal proceedings over a crime envisioned by the Russian Criminal Code’s Article 205.5 Part 2 (participation in a terrorist organization’s activity)," senior aide to the Directorate’s chief, Yulia Ivanova, said.

According to investigators, "The 17-year-old resident of the capital left Russia for the Syrian Arab Republic not later than December 2014, where he illegally took part in the international terrorist organization ‘Islamic State’."

"Besides, the young man posted in a social network materials propagating ideas of radical Islam - terrorism and calls for carrying out terrorist activity, as well as photographs with his picture," Ivanova said. At the photograph, the young man poses with items looking like small arms in hands and is surrounded by Arab-looking persons against the background of IS symbols.

There are plans to put the suspect on an international wanted list.

"Investigators are currently carrying out a comprehensive set of investigative activities aimed at establishing all circumstances of what happened, as well as bringing charges in absentia and putting the underage on an international wanted list," Ivanova said.

According to UN statistics, fighting between Syrian government troops and militants has killed more than 200,000 people and displaced millions since its start in 2011.

Russian military operation in Syria

Russia’s Aerospace Forces started delivering pinpoint strikes in Syria at facilities of the Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra terrorist organizations, which are banned in Russia, on September 30, 2015, on a request from Syrian President Bashar Assad.

The air group initially comprised over 50 aircraft and helicopters, including Sukhoi Su-24M, Su-25SM and state-of-the-art Su-34 aircraft. They were redeployed to the Khmeimim airbase in the province of Latakia.

On October 7, four missile ships of the Russian Navy’s Caspian Flotilla fired 26 Kalibr cruise missiles (NATO codename Sizzler) at militants’ facilities in Syria. On October 8, the Syrian army passed to a large-scale offensive.

In mid-November, Russia increased the number of aircraft taking part in the operation in Syria to 69 and involved strategic bombers in strikes at militants.

Targets of the Russian aircraft include terrorists’ gasoline tankers and oil refineries.

Russian aircraft have delivered over 4,000 missile and bombing strikes since September 30.

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