There’s a Syrian prison, holding hundreds of children who have never been convicted of any crime. Michael Safi tells the story of one of them.

Yusuf Zahab, an Australian teenager, was one of an estimated 750 children detained in a prison in north-eastern Syria for adult former Islamic State (IS) fighters. In January this year, an IS cell attacked the prison, triggering a terrible days-long battle between militants and US troops and their allies.

Bleeding from his injuries, Zahab, 17, survived days as a human shield in a battle that killed an estimated 500 people. The last time his family heard from him was when he told them he saw a small window to surrender safely and was taking it. After that, he vanished.

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