Dutch citizens are fighting in Syria: spy chief

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The chief of the Netherlands’ top intelligence agency is warning that dozens of Dutch citizens are fighting alongside opposition group in Syria and could return home battle-hardened, traumatized and even further radicalized.

General Intelligence and Security Service chief Rob Bertholee says the number of Dutch nationals heading to Syria is growing fast and he is concerned about their return home after fighting with radical Islamic opposition group in the bloody civil war.

Bertholee told Dutch current affairs show Nieuwsuur late Thursday that hundreds of people from around Europe and dozens from the Netherlands have travelled to Syria to join opposition fighting what they see as a holy war, or jihad, to oust President Bashar Assad.

Bertholee says propaganda romanticizing the civil war is helping draw foreigners into Syria’s maelstrom of violence.

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