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8 murders in Syrian camp in one month: Kurds

The picture shows civilians taking refuge in camps along the border between Turkey and Syria’s northwestern border. (Photo by Mohamed Said/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

  • Last month, at least eight people were killed in Olkhor, Hassek.
  • The city is home to approximately 62,000 people, most of whom are women and children.
  • According to reports, the people killed were nationals of Syria and Iraq.

Kurdish militants said on Tuesday that at least eight murders occurred in a camp in northeastern Syria that houses relatives of the Islamic State organization last month, the latest in dozens of such killings since January.

The Kurdish army has been working hard to maintain security in the huge tent city of Al-Hol, which has approximately 62,000 people, most of whom are women and children.

The United Nations warned that radicalization may occur within the camp, which placed Syrians, Iraqis and approximately 10,000 foreign women and children associated with ISIS in a separate annex.

The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces stated that in June this year, the Islamic State organization in Al-Hol “performed more killings of residents far from the organization’s extremist ideas.”

It said eight people of Syrian and Iraqi nationality were shot dead, including a 16-year-old Iraqi refugee and two 17- and 23-year-old Syrian sisters. A Russian woman was injured.

The SDF also added that in June, 42 women and men of different nationalities and 43 children tried to sneak themselves out of the camp.

Read also | The Syrian regime shelled Idlib, killing 9 people, monitoring report

In early April, the Self-Defense Forces stated that they had captured 125 suspected Islamic State members during a security raid in Al-Hol in Hasakah.

At the time, the organization stated that there had been 47 killings in the three months since the beginning of this year.

The Syrian Kurds detained thousands of suspected Islamic State fighters and their relatives in prison after expelling jihadists from the last territory they controlled in 2019.

The Kurdish authorities have repeatedly urged the international community to repatriate their nationals, but so far, most countries have only recovered some children.

Outside the refugee camp, the ICRC last week warned the Kurdish authorities about the detention of “hundreds of children” in adult prisons.

The Kurds responded by urging the international community to help set up more rehabilitation centers for minors associated with extremists.

IS occupied most of Syria and neighboring Iraq in 2014, and subsequent military offensives led to its defeat in the eastern Syrian territory in March 2019.

However, jihadist latent groups continue to launch regular attacks in the two countries.

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