UN urges states to repatriate ISIS nationals from Syria’s Hawl Camp

QAMISHLI, Syria (North Press) – UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres reiterated on Monday his call for all the member states to accelerate the pace of repatriating their ISIS nationals from Hawl Camp in northeast Syria.

Guterres’ call came during his speech in the UN High-level Conference of Heads of Counter-Terrorism Agencies of Member States at UN Headquarters in New York, the US. The UN Counter-Terrorism Week is a biennial gathering of the member states and international counter-terrorism partners.   

Guterres said despite the “significant gains over the years, terrorism and violent extremism continue to take root and grow,” adding, that al-Qaeda and ISIS are rapidly deploying in Africa.

“The brutal legacy of Da’esh in Iraq and Syria continue to cast a long shadow over tens of thousands of lives,” he warned.  

Two days ago, Iraq’s Minister of Defense Thabet al-Abbasi said the Hawl Camp has transformed into an outpost for ISIS members. He urged every nation to repatriate their nationals from the camp and ensure its closure, noting that Syria’s northeastern camp has been “a significant cause for concern.”

Guterres commended Iraq and other member states that repatriated their nationals from northeast Syria.

The UN chief pointed out that more than 50,000 children, women and men still remain in Hawl Camp and other camps and detention centers in northeast Syria.  

“I reiterate my call for all Member States to help accelerate the pace of repatriation as an urgent priority.”

Reporting by Jwan Shekaki