Khaled Sharrouf’s children posing with their dad.
Khaled Sharrouf’s children posing with their dad.

Notorious terror children located

Family members of Australia's most notorious terrorist have been found in a sprawling refugee camp in northern Syria, five years after they were dragged from Australia by their mother.

The three remaining children of Khaled Sharrouf and Tara Nettleton - and two of their grandchildren - are reportedly waiting for help at the al-Hawl refugee camp where 60 children have already died.

The ABC reports the sightings of Zaynab, 17, Hoda, 16, and Humzeh, 8, as well as Zaynab's two children Ayesha, 3, and Fatima, 2, constitutes the first time the children have been seen since Nettleton fled Australia in 2014.

The Sharroufs travelled to the conflict zone a few months after Sharrouf fled Australia on his brother's passport to join the fight.

They almost immediately made international headlines when, in August of that same year, Sharrouf published shocking pictures of one of his children holding a severed head.

Barefoot, giving the IS salute. Khaled Sharrouf with Zarqawi, Abdullah and Humzeh.
Barefoot, giving the IS salute. Khaled Sharrouf with Zarqawi, Abdullah and Humzeh.

 

 

Zaynab spoke with reporter Laura Banks in 2016.
Zaynab spoke with reporter Laura Banks in 2016.

In other photos, the children posed with dead bodies hung from metal crosses.

Nettleton died in 2015 and Sharrouf and his two eldest sons - Abdullah and Zarqawi - died in an air strike in 2017.

Zaynab was just 13 when she married Sharrouf's best friend and fellow Australian terrorist Mohamed Elomar. Elomar, like Sharrouf, died in an air strike.

The news comes as another Australian terror recruit begs for a second chance.

Sydney tradie Mohammed Noor Masri, 26, says he joined Islamic State without realising how brutal the terror group was and now wants to come home.

The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age broke the story over the weekend from northern Syria where Mr Masri is locked up having surrendered as IS collapsed at Baghouz a month ago.

He has a pregnant wife and three young children in the Middle East.

In an interview with reporter David Wroe, Mr Masri says he made a "mistake" and that he is "remorseful" and "regretful".

"It was scary," he said. "It was terrifying. It was very hard. But I'm glad it's over."

He wants to be prosecuted in Australia, citing "human rights", but that's unlikely given the Morrison Government's reluctance to repatriate Australians who choose to fight with terror groups.

He told Wroe that he didn't know how brutal IS was until he got there.

"I didn't see the heads on spikes … I didn't see any heads or severed bodies and stuff like that. I wasn't the type of person to be running around the shops too much … and I don't like to see beheadings. I don't like to see those sort of scenes. Nor do I agree with it."

Wroe told the Today show this morning that he found the claim of ignorance hard to swallow.

"I will let the viewers read and watch and make up their own minds," he said.

"I would point to the fact that in order to believe that he did not know the true nature of this organisation he would have had to close his eyes and his ears to evidence out there in

news media, on the internet, among conversations with people in the streets not to notice that they were brutal and sadistic and apocyliptic in their nature.

"You can believe him. You can believe that he thought that the media stories were absolute conspiracy, that it was just Islamophobia on the part of the media, but you need to believe that in order to say, "OK, he went over there innocently not understanding that this is actually the brutal organisation that it was."

Mr Masri says he deserves a second chance because everybody "makes mistakes". He says his children deserve a chance to grow up in Australia, too.

"It's not my kids' fault," he said. "They're just babies. They don't even know what life is."

As many as 85 Australians are believed to have been killed as a result of their involvement in IS' war in the Middle East.

Scott Morrison has made it clear he does not want to bring Australian IS recruits home, but the Attorney-General's Department told news.com.au those who do return will be dealt with severely.

"Any returning foreign fighters who have fought in the conflict zone, have been a member of the terrorist group, or have been in a declared area, will face the full extent of the law," a spokesman said.

Sharrouf’s youngest son poses with a dead body.
Sharrouf’s youngest son poses with a dead body.