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Tajiks Detained In Turkey After Allegedly Trying To Join IS

  • RFE/RL's Tajik Service

DUSHANBE -- Forty-five foreigners have been arrested in Turkey after allegedly trying to enter Syria illegally to join the Islamic State (IS) militant group, Turkish media said.

The Dogan news agency reported that the group, including women and children, were detained in Istanbul and the southeastern city of Gaziantep near the Syrian border between July 10 and July 12.

The news agency said the majority of the foreigners were Tajik nationals, but it didn't give exact figures.

The Tajik Embassy in Ankara and officials in Dushanbe told RFE/RL on July 13 that they hadn't received any official information about the arrests.

Tajik authorities estimate that some 300 Tajik nationals have joined IS militants in Syria and Iraq. Some of the militants have left along with their families.

Tajik officials say most of the militants have been radicalized in Russia, where more than 1.2 million Tajik migrant laborers are engaged mostly in seasonal jobs.