The police here released photos and details of five youths from the district who have left for Syria to fight for the Islamic State (IS).
The disclosure by the police followed the recent arrest of five suspected IS operatives in the district, three of them had been deported by the Turkish authorities after they were captured while crossing the border to Syria. The police had recently confirmed the death of five others who had gone to Syria as IS fighters.
The five IS fighters from Kannur who are still in Syria have been identified as Abdul Khayyoom (25) of Chekkikulam near Kuttyattur; Abdul Manaf P.P. (30); Shabeer Muhammed Shafi (33) of Mooppanpara near Valapattanam; his relative Suhail (18); and Safwan (17), resident of Pazhanjirapally in Pappinissery.
Last week the police had confirmed the death of Safwan’s brother Salman and father T.V. Shameer in Syria, who were among the five confirmed to have died in Syria.
Mr. Sadanandan, who is involved in an investigation into IS-related cases in the district, said though the police had information about their travel to Syria to join IS, it was confirmed during the interrogation of the five suspected IS operatives arrested last week. The arrested included U.K. Hamza of Thalassery, who is believed to be the main recruiter of the network. Now in police custody, the arrested would be questioned to get more details about the IS module here and its activities, he said.
The police said that the families of four of the five youths identified as IS workers fighting in Syria were also in that country. The police are trying to get more details about the families, they said.
Khayyoom had gone to Syria on April 18, 2017, from India while Abdul Manaf had left for Syria using a fake passport. He was a close associate of Shahjahan Velluvan Kandy (32), an IS operative who had been arrested in Delhi in July following his deportation by Turkey.
Manaf had met Shahjahan and his group of IS fighters in Istanbul, the police said. Suhail had reached Syria from Dubai last year, the police said. The police also said that the five youths were workers of the Popular Front of India (PFI).