Hundreds of young British girls have been trafficked to Syria by Isis and are now trapped there, a report published today has revealed.
Nadia was 12 years old when she was taken to Syria by a male relative from the UK, according to human rights charity Reprieve.
The Trafficked to Syria report tells how, when in Syria, Nadia was repeatedly raped, forced into marriage at the age 14 and had her first child conceived by rape by the age of 15.
It reads: "Nadia was born and raised in England by British Pakistani parents. The women in the family were close, in part as a result of the dominating nature of the male members of the family.
"In Syria, Nadia was detained in a 'hostel' for unmarried women and girls. Her elder sister tried to protect her by agreeing to marry but this did not protect Nadia for long and at the age of 14 she was forced into marriage.
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"Nadia was repeatedly raped, assaulted and forcibly impregnated and gave birth to her first child aged 15.
"Eventually, after years of domestic servitude and sexual exploitation, Nadia, her sister and mother managed to escape ISIS territory and make their way to the north of the country held by the Kurds, where she is now detained along with her young son."
Reprieve’s investigations reveal that the majority of British women detained in North East Syria (NES) – at least 63% – are victims of trafficking.
This is based on evidence that these women were all subjected to sexual and other forms of exploitation, and were either transported to Syria as children; coerced into travelling to Syria; or kept and moved within Syria against their will.
Some, like Nadia, were as young as 12 when they were trafficked.
After years of exploitation the British women and their children managed to escape Isis territory and make their way to the part of the country held by the Kurdish authorities (AANES), where they are now detained indefinitely without charge or trial in desert camps, and are facing potential transfer to jurisdictions where they are at risk of torture and the death penalty.
Reprieve says: "The conditions in these camps are dire.
"In one camp alone, 517 people, mostly children, died in 2019, and at least two British nationals have died whilst in detention in NES, including one infant."
The authors of the report say that "the complex dynamics of the situation of British women and children detained in NES can only be properly dealt with by the UK authorities when the families are repatriated to Britain, and it is wrong to suggest that the UK can abandon these victims of trafficking".
They have urged the government to repatriate all British families back to the UK in order to effectively assess and investigate their status as victims of human trafficking and hold an independent inquiry into the failure to protect vulnerable individuals from being trafficked by Isis.
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