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FSA seeks solution to detained ISIS militants

Features | 2018-02-19 20:34:00
FSA seeks solution to detained ISIS militants
(Zaman Al Wasl)- Tens of former ISIS militants including Egyptians, Tunisians, Russians, Frenchmen, Uzbeks and even Syrians have been, with their families, in the custody of the Free Syrian Army, after uprooting ISIS from northern Aleppo province.

Most of them reside in special camps while some await their trial and others are undergoing psycho-social treatment in centers established in Aleppo countryside. 

Regarding the fate of the Islamic State former fighters, especially the foreigners among them, and the fate of their families who fled towards the liberated areas, Zaman al-Wasl spoke to 

Captain Saad Fares who works in the national security forces in Azaz town said the number of families coming from ISIS-held areas to Free Syrian Army areas is in the hundreds. They have been placed in camps under maximum security, and they are provided with all their necessities while the fighters have been transferred to the judiciary.” 

“We are communicating with the Turkish government about them to decide their fate, but so far there is nothing new, and they must be handed over to their respective countries because most of them are women and children. Their numbers are large, and it is necessary to find a solution for them, and they must be transported to their countries as soon as possible,” said Captain Fares. 

In an attempt to reform the Islamic State foreigner, Arab and Syrian fighters, the Syrian Center for the Treatment of Extremist Thought was inaugurated in the city of Maraa in the Aleppo’s northern countryside at the end of 2017. The Center currently receives dozens of former Islamic State combatants. 

Hussein Nasser, the Center's director, told Zaman al-Wasl that “the center has three main sections. The first is specialized in receiving migrants, the second is specialized for Syrians, the third is the specialized for those who have killed and for whom there is proof that they murdered Free Syrian Army members in the area.” 

“In the center we fulfill all residents needs,” he said. “There are Sharia scholars and psychologists who give lectures and lessons to correct the residents’ thinking, and we show films that clarify the truth of the Islamic State.” 

“We have found a receptiveness and improvement in the thinking of former Islamic State fighters among the Syrians because the Islamic State tricked them through the media or similar means. The first person, a 14 year old child, graduated after he was treated and based on an extensive study of his case, we decided to release him and he now lives in Azaz’s countryside,” said Nasser. 

Regarding the fate of the migrants, Nasser said, “We have received strong promises from the United Nations through its contact with the countries that have nationals in Syria, that they will be handed over [to them] within a short period.”

The Syrian Center for the Treatment of Extremist Thought seeks, to save it can from the thinking of these former Islamic State combatants within the means possible in Aleppo’s countryside and amid locals’ welcoming of the initiative and their fear that some of the foreigners will not respond to the training or treatment.
Zaman Al Wasl
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