Iraqi forces claim to have captured an Islamic State militant from China and posted photos on the army's official Facebook account. If the claim proves accurate, it would be the first time a Chinese national has been found fighting for the Sunni extremist militant group, which has occupied large parts of Iraq and Syria.

Iraq’s Minister of Defense posted two pictures of what appeared to be a captured soldier, along with a short message that described the man as a “Chinese daash,” the South China Morning Post reported, adding that the Chinese government has yet to release a statement on the Iraqi claims. 

"Daash" is an acronym for "Dulat al-Islam fi al-Iraq wal-Sham," Arabic for the Islamic State in Iraq and Greater Syria, as the Islamic State was formerly known. In one picture, the captured Islamic militant, whose face is badly swollen, is seen being guarded by an Iraqi soldier while, in another picture, the militant is shown lying apparently unconscious on the ground.

If the captured militant proves to be a Chinese national, it would be the first sign of Chinese citizens fighting for the Sunni group in Iraq and Syria, along with hundreds of other foreign Islamists, including citizens of Britain, Australia and the United States, who have travelled to this region of the Middle East, answering the call of jihad to establish what they call an “Islamic Caliphate.”