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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

Over 170 Russians fighting for Daesh killed in Syria: CIS

Iran Press TV

Wed Sep 16, 2015 2:57PM

The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), an organization of former Soviet Republics, says more than 170 Russian nationals have been killed while fighting on the side of the Takfiri Daesh terrorist group in Syria.

Marianna Kochubey, the chairperson of the scientific advisory board of the CIS Anti-Terrorism Center, said on Wednesday that the deaths' statistics refers to the whole period since the beginning of the conflict in the Arab country in 2011.

Kochubey said up to 1,500 Russian citizens have joined the ranks of militant groups in Syria over the past months of turmoil.

Citing Russia's National Anti-Terrorism Committee (NAC), Kochubey said 'between 800 and 1,500 Russian citizens are fighting in Syria ... and more than 170 of them have died,' Russia's TASS news agency reported.

Russian Deputy Security Council Secretary Yevgeniy Lukyanov said in late June that up to 2,000 Russians are fighting in the ranks of Daesh in Syria, expressing concern about the threat posed by the militants upon returning to their home country.

A spokesman for the Russian Interior Ministry has also confirmed that hundreds of Chechens have joined the ranks of the terrorists in Syria, adding that the fate of most of them is unknown.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has said that 25,000 militants from more than 100 countries have joined terrorist groups such as Daesh and the al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front over the past few years of conflict in the Arab country.

Ban has also warned that foreign militants are posing serious threats to global security. He has called on UN member states to boost regional and international cooperation to prevent the travel of foreign terrorists from or through their territories.

The influx of foreign militants into Syria has prompted warnings from several European governments in recent months. A large number of Europeans and Westerners have gone to Syria to fight against the Damascus government and fears are now growing that the militants, trained in Syria, may carry out terrorist attacks once they return home.

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