Thousands of ISIS fanatics including 'Beatles' killers ‘could be FREED from prison' if Donald Trump pulls US troops out of SyriaDecember 23, 2018
El Shafee Elsheikh and Alexanda Kotey are being held by Kurdish forces in northern Syria.
Ilhan Ahmed, a senior Kurdish official, told a news conference in Paris that the region could be sent “out of control,” adding: “We will no longer be able to contain them.”
About 800 IS fighters, as well as about 548 wives and 1,248 children are held in prisons run by the Kurdish-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
But the Kurds face being overrun by Turkish forces if their American allies leave the country.
Britain is among countries refusing to take back IS fighters.
The New York Times reported Kurdish forces have agreed to release 1,100 Islamic State fighters and 2,080 relatives as a response.
The reasoning behind the move would be to free up fighters to defend against a possible invasion from Turkey – an eventuality some think is more likely without the US presence.
The Syrian Defence Force is known to hold large numbers of IS prisoners, keeping them in seven makeshift prisons in northern Syria.
The new threat comes as Trump tweeted: “I’ve done more damage to ISIS than all recent presidents….not even close!”
The threat of returning ISIS militants will seriously concern counter-terror police in Europe.
The Times article quoted The Syrian Observatory on Human Rights, a London-based group with a network of citizen monitors throughout Syria, saying the prisoners come from 31 countries in addition to Syria.
A US government source confirmed the rumours, and told the Time: “If they are released, it’s a real disaster and major threat to Europe.”
The British Foreign Office said in a statement that “much remains to be done and we must not lose sight of the threat they pose.”
Many believe a premature withdrawal from Syria would inevitably lead to a resurgence of the so-called Islamic State.
Military intervention from the US, including targeted air strikes, have helped push Islamic State militants back from areas controlled by the Syrian Democratic Forces, a predominantly Kurdish group.
The British Foreign Office was quoted as saying that despite progress in fighting the Islamic State, “much remains to be done and we must not lose sight of the threat they pose.”
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