In the aftermath of the battle for Mosul last month, pictures emerged of a terrified and dust-covered 16-year-old Caucasian girl being led away by the jubilant Iraqi forces who had captured her. German authorities subsequently confirmed that the girl was Linda Wenzel, from Pulsnitz, near Dresden, who had been radicalised online before travelling to Syria to join Islamic State (IS) in July 2016. She was found in a tunnel system with four other German women and a badly malnourished baby, before being transferred to a jail in Baghdad.
The capture of Wenzel has highlighted the role of foreign women and their children in IS’s conflicts. As many as a hundred women are believed to have left Britain for IS territory since 2013, and more than 500 from Europe as a whole.
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