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Ministry: around 2,400 Tunisians fighting in Syria

Tunisian authorities had prevented 8,000 people from travelling to Syria

Published: Updated:

At least 2,400 Tunisian jihadists are fighting in Syria, most of them rebels affiliated to the radical Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), Tunisia’s interior minister said Monday.

“According to what we have gathered, there are 2,400 Tunisians who have gone to Syria to fight with Al Nusra Front and the majority of them -- 80 percent -- with (ISIL),” Lotfi Ben Jeddou told reporters, without specifying his source.

In February, the minister said Tunisian authorities had prevented 8,000 people from traveling to Syria, while some 400 Tunisians had already returned from fighting there.

ISIS, one of the main forces battling the regime of President Bashar al-Assad, controls certain key regions in northern and northeast Syria and has cut a swathe through northern Iraq in recent weeks.