AANES hands over 14 members of ISIS families to Canada

QAMISHLI, Syria (North Press) – The Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) handed over four women and ten children of the Islamic State (ISIS) families to a Canadian delegation on Wednesday, according to an official repatriation document between the AANES and Canada.

This came in a meeting on Wednesday between senior officials from the Canadian Foreign Ministry and the Foreign Relations Department of the AANES.

The Canadian delegation consisted of Sebastien Beaulieu, Director of Security and Emergency Management for Global Affairs of Canada, Rasta Daei, Head of Office of Embassy of Canada in Syria and Lebanon, and Yannick Lamond, Head of the Emergency Operations Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

They were received by the deputy co-chair of the Foreign Relations Department, Rubel Baho, and other AANES officials.

Previously published reports by North Press said Canada was preparing to receive a group of women and children on their way home from camps in northeastern Syria.

In January, the federal government agreed to repatriate six women and 13 children but is still arguing over the issue of repatriation of four imprisoned men who had joined ISIS in Syria.

According to yesterday’s meeting, two women and three children who were approved by the Canadian authorities were not among the repatriated group.

Rubel Baho said that despite all the difficult circumstances experienced by the AANES, they would continue to cooperate with Canada and with all states who have citizens and children in AANES areas.

The Canadian delegation expressed their gratitude for AANES’ cooperation praising AANES’ efforts in providing care for foreigners in camps amid the extremely difficult security situation and challenges.

The Foreign Relations Department and the Canadian delegation discussed political aspects of the situation in Syria and the Turkish threats to the region as well as the normalization process between the “Turkish and Syrian regimes” as “it would be like bringing the conflict in Syria back to square one,” according to the statement.

Reporting by Hozan Zubeir