NEW DELHI: At least 800 women from Iraq, Jordan and Syria were forced to join the Islamic State terrorist group recently, a US based Iranian journalist Azabeh Moaveni said at the India Today conclave here on Thursday.
"All these women had to join the terrorists as they had no other choice," Moaveni said claiming she talked to six of these fighters in Syria.
"IS have reintroduced the concept of sex slavery and they have been justifying it under the name of Islam," Moaveni said.
"This was the first Jihad where you can have female companion that maybe the reason why many people from Europe ended up joining IS. Later they realized that it gave no autonomy to the women," she said.
She said many of IS's top leaders are of British origin. Azabeh Moaveni covered the Middle East for Times magazine.
Counter-terrorism expert Daniel Benjamin said "they use women as temporary comfort for their fighters," adding that fear remains the most effective weapon of the IS to control its people."
"Other militia groups who don't impose barbarism are being endured by the people in Syria and other affected countries these days as it has evolved as another reason of worry for the global security establishment," he added.
A freelance photographer from Denmark Daniel Rye Ottosen who escaped from IS captivity after paying a ransom said, "The world has become a difficult place to live in as there (was) no space for freedom of expression."
"People who are joining IS from these countries believe that media is Islamophobic and it is lying to them."