The Netherlands has announced its plans to repatriate 12 women and 28 children back to their home country, in the latest move by a European State to do so.
According to a statement by the Dutch government yesterday, the women – who are suspected of committing terror offences due to their travel to join Daesh – “will be arrested after their arrival in the Netherlands and will be tried”. Neither the identity of the women, the children, nor their location were revealed.
Following the territorial defeat of Daesh in 2019, its surviving fighters were captured and detained in prisons, while their family members with them were taken to the Kurdish-run camps in north-east Syria, where they are being kept for an indefinite period of time.
Many of the foreign nationals in the camps – who consist of women and children – continue to wait for their home countries, or those of their parents’, to repatriate them. That process has been slow, however, especially amongst western and European States which have been reluctant to bring them home, due to the threats they would allegedly pose to national security.
One of those reluctant countries was the Netherlands, before a Rotterdam court, in May, ordered authorities to repatriate the women and children within four months in order to “prevent them from going unpunished”.