Canada to repatriate ‘Jihadi Jack’, 22 other citizens

QAMISHLI, Syria (North Press) – According to a report by Sky News, Canada will repatriate Jack Letts, also known as ‘Jihadi Jack’, as part of its pledge to take back 23 ISIS-linked citizens from camps and prisons in North and East Syria.

Letts joined the jihadist outfit in 2014 and was arrested by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in 2017. He has been held in northeast Syria ever since. Though born as a dual British-Canadian citizen, he was stripped of his British citizenship by the UK Home Office in 2019.

He previously expressed regret over his actions and pledged to aid de-radicalization programs if released.

A Canadian federal court ruled that Letts and three other men being held in northeast Syria must be repatriated by the government. Family members of the men had brought the case before the court, arguing that the Canadian government was violating the men’s constitutional rights.

The court said the men should be repatriated “as soon as reasonably possible”.

Last week, the Canadian government had informed the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) that it was ready to repatriate six Canadian women and 13 of their children.

Canada has repatriated only seven of their nationals since 2019. The last repatriation took place in October 2022. Until now, Canada has only repatriated women and children.

Reporting by Sasha Hoffman