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A Syrian Kurdish militia said Wednesday its fighters have captured eight foreign fighters with the Islamic State group in eastern Syria, including an American teenager.
The force known as the People’s Protection Units, or YPG, said the militants were captured earlier in the week in a special operation in the eastern province of Deir el-Zour, where IS extremists are still holding on to pockets of territory amid fierce fighting.
Among the eight are an American, a German, a Russian, a national from the Ukraine as well as Tajik and Uzbek nationals.
In a statement, the YPG identified the 16-year-old American teenager as Soulay Noah Su. No other details were immediately provided.
A State Department spokesperson said the department is aware of the reports but had no further comment. The spokesperson commented on condition the official not be identified by name.
On Sunday, the Kurdish group announced the capture of five fighters, including two U.S. citizens, one of whom has been identified as a former school teacher from Houston.
Hundreds of Islamic State group foreign fighters captured in Syria are being held in Kurdish detention centers in the north, including many European citizens. What to do with them has become a critical and growing problem for the Trump administration as it prepares to pull troops out of the country.
Western nations have been reluctant to take back citizens with ties to the Islamic State, not wanting the legal challenge of prosecuting them or the potential security risk if they are released.
Associated Press writer Susannah George in Washington contributed.