Source: Associated Press
By LORI HINNANT
PARIS (AP) — Six families of French jihadis captured during Islamic State’s retreat filed a complaint Wednesday demanding that the government bring them home, a week after a video of two notorious European extremists renewed the debate over how hundreds of foreign Islamic State fighters should be handled.
The complaint, filed by families of French women and children held by Kurdish militias, condemned what it called “deliberate inertia” by French authorities, saying it had left mothers and children — including infants — vulnerable to the risks of living in a war zone.
Yet in an interview in Monday’s Liberation newspaper, France’s military chief Florence Parly said she sees no reason to bring French jihadis home for trial. She says only 20 returned to France last year, while Belgium’s top security official has said only five of the country’s foreign fighters returned in 2017.
“The pseudo-Caliphate no longer controls territory, but this terrorist movement will without a doubt pursue its goals clandestinely,” Parly said. “For those French who are detained in the Levant, I remind you that these people took the initiative to join a terrorist organization that was engaged in combat in that zone, and that committed and continues to seek to commit attacks in France.”