SDF calls for creation of international court to prosecute ISIS members in Syria
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have called for the establishment of an international court in Syria to try suspected members of the so-called Islamic State.
“We call on the international community to establish a special international tribunal in northeast Syria to prosecute terrorists,” the SDF said in a statement on Monday.
With the establishment of an international court, “trials can be conducted fairly and in accordance with international law and human rights covenants and charters,” the statement added.
The US-backed forces say they currently have over 5,000 Islamic State members in their custody since the beginning of the year and warned it does not have the capacity to detain the large numbers of people.
The United States has called on countries to bring home thousands of Islamic State members which the Kurdish-led troops have captured in Syria.
So far, European states have been reluctant to bring back Islamic State fighters or women accused of membership in the extremist group and their children who are stuck in Syria.
Many EU countries fear that due to the lack of evidence, Islamic State supporters could be quickly released once they appear in court after returning home.
“The Kurdish administration in northeast Syria has appealed to the international community to shoulder its responsibilities toward members of the terrorist organization detained by Kurdish security forces,” the SDF statement read.
Related Article: SDF announces the end of the self-proclaimed Islamic State Caliphate
Following a prolonged military offensive on the extremist group’s last remaining pocket of territory in war-torn Syria, the US-backed SDF announced victory over the Islamic State on Saturday.
The final push was initially put on hold earlier this month by the US-led coalition and the SDF in an attempt to spare civilian lives and hostages that were being held captive by the resisting militants.
The announcement marked the end of the extremist group’s self-declared caliphate from June 2014, which at its height controlled an area comparable to the size of Britain, with a population estimated at 12 million people under its control.