Australia grandmother in emotional reunion with IS fighter's orphans

Sydney grandma Karen Nettleton meeting her great-grandchildren for the first time

Sydney grandma Karen Nettleton meeting her great-grandchildren for the first time

Among them are a heavily pregnant Zaynab, 17, Hoda, 16, and Humzeh, 8, as well as Zaynab's two toddler daughters.

When asked about the Sharrouf children, Australian prime minister Scott Morrison has expressed sympathy for their situation and expressed horror at their parents' decision to put them in harm's way.

The children - who were taken to Syria by their parents before they were killed - are in the Kurdish-controlled al-Hawl refugee camp in Syria alongside Zaynab's two daughters, aged three and two. After hundreds of lengthy discussions with the Australian Government and days in Syria waiting for answers, Nettleton received news that she would have to wait yet more time for the children to be processed with no definitive date given.

"We know these children have witnessed violence, acts of atrocities, some young children might have been direct eye witnesses or even involved in some of these behaviours", she said.

Hoda Sharrouf (right) has begged to be allowed back into Australia. He was a despicable individual. This is a very special brand of evil that he lived.

Zaynab Sharrouf said they had wanted to return home "for a very long time" but had been fearful of rumours in the camp of those attempting to leave being caught, raped and tortured.

While Australian officials have confirmed the children will be resettled with their grandmother accordingly, pressure to get them home quickly is mounting. "They are in a very unsafe part of the world and Australia is not in a position to offer any safe passage for people who are in that part of the world".

The family shot to global infamy in 2014 when Sharrouf published a picture of his then seven-year-old son Abdullah holding a severed head on social media.

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An Australian grandmother to children of a notorious Islamic State group fighter has tracked down the orphans in a Syrian refugee camp in an emotional reunion she hopes will lead to their return home.

'I think that's my biggest fear, to give birth here because I've heard a lot of stories of people giving birth inside their tent and a lot of them haven't worked out properly, ' Zaynab told the ABC program. "Their parents took them to a war zone, incredibly irresponsibly". "They had knives and cell phones saying that they will take videos while cutting off our heads because we follow a different religion".

"These children shouldn't be held guilty for the crimes of their parents". "If they can get that, that would be the best way to reabsorb them into Australian life".

Sydney grandma Karen Nettleton meeting her great-grandchildren for the first time.

"Just because their last name is Sharrouf, doesn't mean they are monsters", Nettleton said.

Professor Louise Newman - one of Australia's leading experts on the impact of trauma on children - said Australia was "not ready" for, or equipped to handle, the significant trauma to which children of terrorists have often been exposed. And now that our parents are gone, we want to live.

"We were brought here by our parents. And for me and my children I want to live a normal life just like anyone would want to live a normal life".

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