As ISIS Fighters Fill Prisons in Syria, Their Home Nations Look Away

Source: The New York Times

On a rare tour of prisons for Islamic State suspects from nearly 50 countries, a Times reporter watched their jailers try to secure them humanely — but for how long?

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Syrian Democratic Forces have converted this former school in Ainissa, Syria, into a makeshift prison for holding suspected Islamic State fighters. American funds helped pay for the towering concrete perimeter walls installed last month.CreditCharlie Savage/The New York Times

AINISSA, Syria — The two-story building here still looks much like the school it once was. But the classrooms are closed off by reinforced black doors, padlocked from the outside. And the campus is surrounded by men with machine guns seeking refuge from the desert heat in the shade of towering concrete perimeter walls.

The visitors’ echoing footsteps and voices were the only sounds on a recent day in a dusty pink-and-white hallway once filled with schoolchildren. But when a guard slid open a small window in a classroom door, a man’s face pressed against the opening. Behind him, about 15 others, sitting on mats in black sleeveless shirts, stared back.

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