France looks to repatriate the kids of Islamist militants held by Syrian Kurdish forces – National


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France is working to deliver again youngsters held by Syrian Kurdish forces and belonging to suspected French Islamist militants, however will depart their moms to be prosecuted by native authorities, French officers mentioned.

France, like different European nations, has been wrestling with find out how to deal with suspected militants and their households in search of to return from fight zones in Iraq and Syria, in addition to these in detention, after Islamic State surrendered large swathes of territory underneath army stress.

Protection of the repatriation of ISIS fighters on

Islamic State has suffered a collection of lethal militant assaults over the previous three years and is grappling with the specter of homegrown militancy in addition to the dangers posed by fighters slipping again throughout French borders.

Whereas authorities coverage has been to refuse to take again fighters and their wives, France has mentioned it wanted to find out the scenario of minors.

“French authorities are actually getting into an energetic part of analysis on the opportunity of repatriating minors,” one French official mentioned.

Some 60 girls, together with 40 moms with about 150 minors, have been reported in Syria by households in France. The big majority of the youngsters are underneath the age of six.

After cross-checking info with Kurdish authorities and the Worldwide Crimson Cross, Paris has positioned a variety of them in Kurdish-controlled northeastern Syria.

Preparations are being put into place to repatriate youngsters on a case-by-case foundation, together with these born in Syria, the officers mentioned. Their return would rely upon moms agreeing to be separated from their youngsters.

“It’s in the most effective curiosity of the youngsters,” mentioned one of many officers.

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Paris is anxious that if these minors are left in Syria, they might finally additionally change into militants.

The primary youngsters may return by yr’s finish, though the complexity of the scenario might push the timeline.

France in December 2017 repatriated three youngsters belonging to a French lady who was sentenced in June by an Iraqi court docket to life imprisonment for her allegiance to Islamic State.

She saved her youngest baby together with her in detention in Iraq.

That case was simpler for France given Baghdad has a functioning authorized system not like in Kurdish northern Syria, which is outdoors the management of the Syrian authorities.

Figures for the variety of French Islamist fighters within the Levant area have assorted between 500 and 700 through the years.

Authorities estimate there are about 100 within the rebel-held northeastern bastion of Idlib and dozens within the final Islamic State pocket close to the Iraqi border.

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