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Islamic State Fighter Surrenders In Iraq, Says He's American


A man fighting with the Islamic State (IS) militant group gave himself up to Iraqi Kurdish forces in northern Iraq on March 14, describing himself as a Iraqi-Palestinian from the United States.

IS fighters have rarely given themselves up voluntarily. His Kurdish captors posted a video of him surrendering on social media.

U.S. authorities were seeking to ascertain who he is and whether he is American. His U.S. drivers' license, shown on social media, identified him as Muhammad Jamal Khweis from Alexandria, Virginia.

The man said he had been living in Mosul, but Kurdish Peshmerga officers said they found him "lurking" near the front lines over the weekend. The Peshmerga troops thought he might be a suicide bomber and at first tried to shoot the man before he gave himself up near the town of Sinjar.

Kurdish officers said the man was unarmed but carrying a large amount of cash, three cell phones, and three forms of identification, including a U.S. drivers' license.

He spoke English and broken Arabic.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters
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