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BLOODLINES: Transcripts | Listen

From BBC Sounds and CBC Podcasts. Syria. 2018. ISIS is on the brink of defeat. A toddler disappears in the chaos. In London, his grandad needs answers. Poonam Taneja tracels to Syria to investigate.

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The podcast artwork for Bloodlines. An illustration depicting a young boy standing in front of a series of tents, with a watch tower in the background.
(Chloe Cushman)

Syria. 2018. ISIS is on the brink of defeat. Two-year-old Salmaan disappears amid the bombardment. In London, his grandfather desperately searches for answers. 

After the war against the Islamic State was won, what became of the children of its fighters? There are thousands of kids like Salmaan, with roots in Canada, the U.K., the U.S. and beyond — many of whom are still trapped without a way back home. 

Investigative reporter Poonam Taneja has covered the terror group for a decade and now embarks on a dangerous journey to find out what happened to Salmaan and all the kids like him, left behind in the Syrian desert.


From BBC Sounds and CBC Podcasts, Bloodlines will be released weekly for 7 weeks, beginning Oct. 23, 2023.

Episode 7: No Tears Left

Poonam travels to Canada for an unexpected meeting and returns to London where she shares what she has discovered with Ash.

Access the transcript for this episode here.

Episode 6: The Forgotten Children

Salmaan was one of thousands of children born into or brought to live under the caliphate. Four years after the fall of IS, what do their lives look like now? Are they at risk of staying there forever?

Access the transcript for this episode here.

Episode 5: The Crater

Poonam makes the perilous journey to the last known location of baby Salmaan, a guesthouse near where IS made its last stand. But IS sleeper cells still lurk in the desert and Poonam only has one hour on the ground – can she find what she needs in time?

Access the transcript for this episode here.

Episode 4: DA's Secret

Poonam returns to DA, now suspicious of the secret she is keeping. What was IS like through her eyes? What can she tell Poonam about some of the terror group’s most heinous crimes?

Access the transcript for this episode here.

Episode 3: Breakthrough

Poonam finally gets into the prison camp where the families of suspected IS fighters are being held. There, she meets a Canadian woman who has information about baby Salmaan. But it’s clear she isn’t telling Poonam everything.

Access the transcript for this episode here.

Episode 2: Race Against Time

Bombs drop as Poonam enters Syria, blocking access to the areas she needs to get to. If things get worse, the troops guarding IS prisons say they will be forced to abandon their positions. The team makes contact with Salmaan’s Canadian family, learning what they believe happened to him and his mother. Poonam and her team see up close the dangers still facing children here.

Access the transcript for this episode here.

Episode 1: The Lost Boy

Two-year-old Salmaan disappears in the chaos of the final days of the war against ISIS. In London, Salmaan’s grandfather, Ash, has been desperate for answers ever since. Poonam travels to Syria to find out what happened to Salmaan and the thousands of children like him.

Access the transcript for this episode here.

Introducing: Bloodlines (trailer)

Two-year-old Salmaan disappears in the chaos of the final days of the war against ISIS. After the war against the Islamic State was won, what became of the children of its fighters? There are thousands of kids like Salmaan, with roots in Canada, the U.K., the U.S. and beyond — many of whom are still trapped without a way back home. Is it a race against time to rescue them?

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