After ‘caliphate’ debacle, wives of militants cling to children

By AFP – Feb 27,2019 – JORDAN TIMES

Civilians evacuated from the Daesh group’s embattled holdout of Baghouz wait at a screening area held by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces during an operation to expel Daesh terrorists from the area, in the eastern Syrian province of Deir Ezzor, on Tuesday (AFP photo)

AL HOL, Syria  — The motley crew of foreign militants wives held at the Al Hol camp in northeastern Syria are united by at least one thing: the fear of being separated from their children.

Penned in a special section of the camp and huddled in rudimentary tents, most of them are tight-lipped about the lives they led in the Daesh’s “caliphate”.

Kenza, from Morocco, is one of the few who agreed to talk, as a swarm of children of various origins ran around her tent to collect water for their mothers.

She slipped out of Baghouz two weeks earlier, as Kurdish-led forces closed in on the riverside hamlet where holdout Daesh fighters are making their very last stand.

The 38-year-old, fully veiled in black like nearly all other women in the camp, sums up her four years under Daesh rule in a few laconic words.

Her husband brought her to Syria, he never worked for Daesh “because he brought his own money” and then he died in a bombardment.

When asked why she and her three children followed him all the way to the hell of Baghouz, she says: “the terrorists prevented us from fleeing.”

She is now sheltered in a large UN tent which she shares with dozens of other families.

Kenza, who would not give her full name, says she hopes Morocco will take her and her children back and sees no reason why she should be detained.

 How long? 

In the camp’s dusty alleys, a black child who says he is American stops every adult he sees and asks them in a soft, plaintive voice: “Hey, my father is dead. Do you know how much longer we’re going to stay here?”

Nobody answers him because nobody knows


Categories: Arab World, Asia, Islam, Syria

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