(Voice of America) – At least 400 Syrian children have been recruited by the jihadist Islamic State since the start of the year in an enlistment drive partly designed to make up for a shortfall in foreign fighters traveling to join the extremist group, say local political activists. In order to secure more child soldiers, the Islamic State has been opening branches of a youth wing, known as “Ashbal al-Khilafah,” or cubs of the caliphate, beyond its stronghold in the northern Syrian province of Raqqa to other areas it controls in Syria.