London man reveals his role as an Islamic State gravedigger in Baghouz 'slaughterhouse'

An Islamic State grave digger who left London to join the 'caliphate' in Syria has told ITV News how the town of Baghouz became a "slaughterhouse" in the terror group's final days.

Shahan Choudhury, who left London in 2014 explained his role within ISIS while living in Baghouz - the same town Shamima Begum once lived.

Speaking from prison in Syria, he said: "The last thing I was working in is called (speaks in Arabic) - it's public services, last thing I was doing was digging graves and burying people."

The 32-year-old insisted he wasn't involved in any fighting but said "somebody has to bury the dead people, who’s going to do that? There were dead bodies everywhere."

He added: "To put it in short words, it was a complete "slaughterhouse".

He claims he and his wife left the UK with the intention of helping Muslims in refugee camps who had been fleeing war in Syria but after speaking with friends online he decided to relocate.

"They told me, come to Dawla (Islamic State) at that time, the situation is very good over there, you can come here, you can maybe help people over there as well," he said.

He added: "At that time there was a big media hype about Dawla, the Caliphate has returned.

"I was curious, I wanted to come and see for myself. So I came to, to ISIS, and I wanted to witness the situation."

He explained how he lived in Syria with his 28-year-old wife Mehak Aslam and their four daughters.

As an 18-year-old, Choudhury spent 18 months on remand in Belmarsh prison in relation to a gang-related stabbing incident over which he was later acquitted.

Mehak's parents, who still live in London, told ITV News they are "ashamed" and "can't understand where we've gone wrong with her".

Her father Mohammed Aslam said he can't believe his daughter is "involved in this kind of thing", adding how she is "naive" and easily manipulated.

Mohammed and Noshad Aslam spoke to ITV News about their daughter in Syria. Credit: ITV News

Mr Aslam says he wonders where she got the idea from to go to Syria, claiming "she's been brainwashed into this".

He says Mehak was the type of woman who would "ask permission if she wanted to go shopping in Illford" and said she is not the daughter he remembers.

He added: "If I hadn't seen it with my own eyes I wouldn't have believed it."

Choudhury explained how he had five children with Mehak while they were living in Syria but says one died.

A photograph of Mehak Aslam was displayed in her parents home on a picture holder with the words 'Daddy's Girl'. Credit: ITV News

Now he says he is living with no hope of ever regaining his freedom and admits it was a mistake to go to Syria.

He said: "I don’t think I have any future, I'm stuck in prison, most probably I'll be in prison for the rest of my life so I don’t have any hope."

He added: "Of course it was a mistake (to come to Syria). If I knew how the people sold out all the foreigners.

"The foreigners came to help them, but everyone from the Iraqis to the Syrians, they back-stabbed foreigners and now this is my state.

"I’m in an underground prison where I don’t see no sunlight or anything. I don’t know if it’s day or night."