When reading about the 2016 Brussels bombings on wikipedia, I came across a paragraph that was a bit difficult to comprehend.
Belgium also has the highest number per capita of foreign fighters in Syria of any western country, with nearly 500 having left for Syria and Iraq as of 2016.
The source of the claim is a CNN article. Searching for '500' brings us to the following paragraph:
Per capita, Belgium has the highest number of foreign fighters in Syria of any Western European nation. Experts say nearly 500 men and women have left Belgium for Syria and Iraq since 2012.
From the context, I gather that people have left Belgium to actually join extremists, but the phrasing first lead me to believe that people were leaving Belgium to fight extremists (as in, deployed by the Belgian Armed Forces).
I am having trouble breaking down this sentence, and essentially would like to ask:
- What does it mean to be a "foreign fighter"?
- What does it mean for a country (Belgium) to "have foreign fighters"?
- What does it mean to "leave Belgium for Syria"?
Am I correct to assume that a lot of critical information is missing from the above quote, and actually needs context to make sense?