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Back home: Saudi children abducted by Daesh father.

Summary: Mother's valiant efforts for five years helped authorities repatriate Abdullah, Ahmad

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Manama: Two Saudi children abducted by their pro-Daesh father and taken to Syria to join the terror group have been rescued by Saudi security officers.

Abdullah and Ahmad Nasser Al Shayeq, who were kidnapped by their father five years ago when they were 12 and 10, were on Sunday given a highly emotional welcome by their family when they arrived at King Khalid International Airport.

Saudi children with a news reporter Image Credit: Supplied

Shurooq Al Muhaini -- the mother who thought she would never see her children again -- could barely contain herself.

"There were disagreements with my husband and in 2014, he told me he wanted to take our two sons on a trip to a Gulf country," she said.

"However, on the third day of Eid, he sent me a message at 3 am informing me that he would leave for Syria through Turkey and join the Daesh terror group to fight with them. He told me that I should consider our children as 'Birds in Heaven' since they will sacrifice themselves."

She added that her brother and relatives tried to persuade her husband not take the children with him and argued that they were too young to be dragged into such a world.

"However, he refused to listen to them and insisted that age was not important in making such decisions," she said, quoted by Saudi daily Okaz on Monday.

"I promptly informed the security authorities and contacted the Saudi embassy in Ankara, providing them with a picture of the children amid high hopes that would be rescued and brought home."

The mother then learned that the father, one month after his arrival in Syria, detonated an explosive belt he was wearing as Daesh carried out a terrorist attack.

'My world was crumbling'

With the father gone, the two sons were left to an unknown, obscure future.

Days later, Shurooq had another terrible shock when she saw a picture of her two children carrying Kalashnikovs and posing in front of a Daesh logo with a man believed to be a friend of the fathers.

Saudi children reunited with family 1- Okaz

She collapsed and was admitted to the hospital.

'My world was crumbling'

"My world was crumbling. Everything had been great for the children. They led happy lives and had high scores at school. They had no problems at all and they were not aware of what their father had planned for them," she said.

Rescue after 5 years

The mother intensified her contacts with the Saudi embassy in Turkey to repatriate the children and spare them the gloomy future awaiting them.

The ambassador to Turkey at the time confirmed that efforts had been exerted to locate the children and send them back home.

"We contacted the Turkish government and requested their assistance in finding the children who had been abducted and thrown into a dangerous situation," the ambassador, Adel Murdad, said.

Following five years of strenuous efforts, the two siblings were able to go back to their home and to reuniting with their mother and family.

Not many details emerged about how and where the brothers now 17 and 15 were found, but for the family, the reunion with their long-lost loved ones was what really mattered.

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Article Details
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Publication:Gulf News (United Arab Emirates)
Geographic Code:7SYRI
Date:Apr 1, 2019
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