U.S. official says Hawl Camp ‘ticking bomb’

QAMISHLI, Syria (North Press) – A former senior Pentagon official said on Sunday that Hawl Camp, northeast Syria, is a ticking bomb and “potential triggers” for the bomb could come in different forms.

Wall Street Journal said, citing Dana Stroul, a former senior Pentagon official for the Middle East, that Hawl Camp is “a ticking time bomb because it is one of the most miserable places on earth.”

There are over 10,000 Islamic State (ISIS) militants, mostly leaders, held in prisons by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), alongside more than 50,000 individuals, mostly women and children of the families of ISIS militants in Hawl and Roj camps, northeastern Syria.

If a future U.S. administration were to withdraw U.S. forces from northeast Syria, “security at the camps and detention centers could collapse,” according to the report of the Wall Street Journal.

Neither the U.S. nor its international allies want to hand over the camps to the Syrian “regime” that is accused of massive human-rights abuses. Nor have there been any discussions to transfer the facilities to the United Nations, the report read.

The report suggested that the longer-term solution is to “winnow the populations in the camps and detention centers.” However, repatriation operations are slow and many countries are reluctant to take back their citizens.

All efforts made by some countries to repatriate their citizens are not enough and “would still leave the need for a long-term solution,” according to the source.

By Emma Jamal