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Jakarta Post

Islamic State returnees: Whose human rights come first?

  • Irine H. Gayatri

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PREMIUM
Victoria, Australia    /   Sat, February 29, 2020   /  09:37 am
Islamic State returnees: Whose human rights come first? This picture taken on April 13, 2019 at the Syrian Kurdish-run group Yazidi House's headquarters in the Syrian Yazidi village of Qizlajokh, about 35 kilometres west of Qamishli in the northeastern Hasake province, shows Iraqi Yazidi women and children rescued from the Islamic State (IS) group waiting to board buses bound for Sinjar in Iraq's Yazidi heartland. Syrian Kurds on April 13 repatriated 25 women and children from Iraq's Yazidi minority after freeing them during the final push against the Islamic State group, said an official with Yazidi House, which reunites rescued Yazidi children with surviving relatives. Iraq's Yazidis are a symbol of the suffering caused by IS during its rein over vast swathes of Syria and Iraq. (AFP/Delil Souleiman)

The government’s recent decision to not repatriate Islamic State (IS) fighters to Indonesia should be appreciated. Follow-up measures must come immediately. The government says it will gather data on the number and identity of the citizens who had joined IS; moreover, young children might be repatriated. Coordinating Political, Legal and Security Affairs Minister Mahfud MD said that “children under 10 will be considered on a case-by-case basis: for example, if they have parents there or not”. Such a decision seems to have carefully considered public opinion on the issue. Read also: KPAI urges govt to decide who gets custody of orphaned children of IS affiliates Nowadays every news item of a terrorist act hits home, bringing to mind many attacks in several cities in Indonesia; survivors and affected families and communities are still traumatized and deeply...

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.