Ali's mother, Iman, and her four children were imprisoned as human shields by IS militants as Iraqi forces attacked, recapturing their area early this year in Mosul, Iraq, on Jan. 27, 2017. (H.Murdock/VOA)

Mom, Son Not Heeding Militants' Call

At 14 years old, Ali is a breadwinner and a smoker in an area of Mosul that was recaptured from Islamic State militants by Iraqi forces in early January. Seven months ago, Islamic State militants urged him to join as they bolstered their forces for upcoming battles. In a borrowed house in a part of Mosul no longer under IS control, Ali and his mother, Iman, tell VOA the story of why he could never join the group, no matter how dangerous it was to stay out. Ali and his mom tell their story in Arabic, and it is edited for clarity.

Under the Islamic State