Above: Yusuf Shikder in 2015 (left) and after his abduction, date unknown (right)
Above: Zahra Shikder in 2015 (left) after his abduction, date unknown (right)
Yusuf M. Islam and Zahra Wafa Islam Shikder
Last seen in Hollywood, Florida on March 15, 2015
Vital statistics: Yusuf is an asian (Bengali) male. He was born on June 19, 2010. Brown hair, brown eyes. Was four at the time. Zahra is an asian (Bengali) female. She was born on May 5, 2014. Black hair, brown eyes. Was one at the time. The children speak English and Bengali.
Circumstances: They were abducted by their non-custodial mother, Rashida Sumaiya Shikder. Photos and vital statistics for her are not available. She took the children and left the country while their father, Bashirul Shikder, was on pilgrimage to Mecca. They flew to Turkey and from there to Raqqah, Syria, the location of the terrorist group ISIS. A month later she called him to tell him where they were, but said she could not leave because her passport was taken. He communicated with her intermittently until 2019, when her sister informed him she had been killed in a bombing raid and the children injured. He traveled to Iraq and attempted to find them, but they have not been located. They are believed to be in the Baghuz area of Syria, but may have been taken across the border into Iraq. They are believed to be in the company of their half sister, Safya.
If you have any information as to the Shikder childrens' whereabouts, please contact the U.S. Department of State, Office of Children's Issues at 888-407-4747. Any information received can be kept confidential.
Information used to compile this casefile came from the following resources:
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
The Charley Project
Los Angeles Times
New York Times
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