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Afrin residents fear continued kidnappings

Rogue members of the Free Syrian Army and the Syrian Democratic Forces are thought to be behind kidnappings of Afrin residents in exchange for money.

ALEPPO, Syria — The Northern Brigade, affiliated with the Free Syrian Army (FSA) in Afrin, was able to free 9-year-old Ahmad Taher Mostafa on Oct. 16, one day after a gang kidnapped him after his grandmother dropped him off at the private Al-Asdiqa School in Afrin.

Maysara Abdullah, a military leader in the Northern Brigade, told Al-Monitor, “The kidnappers took Mostafa away Oct. 15, and they contacted his parents, asking for a ransom of $50,000 in return for his release. The father reported the incident to the FSA, and the security office of the Northern Brigade investigated the kidnapping and pursued the gang. They found its location on the outskirts of Afrin, raided the place, freed the child and arrested the gang members.”

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