The widow of Australian Islamic State fighter Khaled Sharrouf, who was allegedly killed in a drone attack last year, died in Syria following complications due to an appendicitis operation in September. She is survived by five children and a grandchild, according to her mother.
Tara Nettleton, 31, has a 14-year old daughter who was married to Sydney-based boxer turned ISIS fighter Mohamed Elomar and gave birth to a baby girl in September last year. Elomar was also believed to have been killed in a drone attack in Iraq last year, along with Sharrouf.
Nettleton was living Raqqa with her five children and grandchild, after the death of her husband. Reportedly, she succumbed to the complications as she could not access the life-saving health services. Robert van Alst, who is a family friend of her, said though she passed away last year her mother, Karen Nettleton, has been informed about her demise recently.
According to van Alst, the news has left Karen devastated. “She said it was the worst day of her life. And it was made worse because she could not be with her daughter when she was dying, to give her comfort,” the Sydney Morning Herald quoted him as saying.
Van Alst said that the major concern now remains about the children who are now stranded in Syria, with no one to look after them. He said they are just a bunch of “innocent Australian kids.”
Charles Waterstreet, Karen’s lawyer, said she is now desperately trying to get the children out of there.
“On my own behalf and on her behalf, I request the Australian Government do everything that they possibly can to get those children away from danger and to get them out and bring them home,” the ABC quoted Waterstreet as saying. “Tara was a very young girl when she married, and now grandchildren and a young baby are left without anyone to look after them.”
Reportedly, Nettleton had previously been admitted to intensive care in hospital due to complications relating to her appendix.