Trump threatens to free Islamic State prisoners at Europe's borders

WASHINGTON (dpa)- US President Donald Trump on Friday urged European nations to take back citizens who joined Islamic State and are now being held in detention camps in north-east Syria by Kurdish-led forces.
Thousands of foreign fighters from some 80 countries joined Islamic State when it seized large swathes of Syria and Iraq in 2014.

The fate of the fighters and their families has become a pressing issue since the defeat of the militant group was announced earlier this year. Some children have been repatriated, but European nations are reluctant for those who actively chose to join the extremist group to return home.
"At some point I'm going to have to say: Either you take them back or we let them go at your border," Trump said in remarks in the Oval Office of the White House on Friday.
Trump said the United States would not cover the costs of detaining the "thousands" of fighters.
"They've mostly come out of Europe," he said of the fighters.
Major military operations by a US-led coalition and Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) against extremists in north-eastern Syria drove tens of thousands of civilians, including many with suspected Islamic State ties, to camps.

Friday, September 20th 2019

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