Belgium repatriated six women and 16 children of jihadists from Syria with Belgian citizenship this Tuesday, June 21. Women are locked up as soon as they land, while youth protection services take care of children.
The repatriation was described by Federal Prosecutor Frederick Van Liu “Political decision (2) Based on the best interests of the child. In early March 2021, the Prime Minister of Belgium, Alexander de Crew, promised “Do everything” Expulsion of children under the age of 12, provided they prove their Belgian parents. An additional condition has been imposed on the acceptance of women in the territory of Belgium: to express regret and to abandon the jihadi ideology.
Inhumane and degrading treatment in Syria
All countries are far from adopting the same policy in repatriating the children of jihadists. In all, they were about 40,000 children and 20,000 women were arrested and delivered to these camps in March 2019, after the defeat of the Islamic State. Among them, about a thousand Europeans, according to figures from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
Children at the scene are suffering from a lack of educational opportunities and living in unhealthy environments and food insecurity. In a statement dated April 29 to draw the attention of the President of the Republic, rights activist Claire Hayden shared her concerns: ” He spends every day in these camps Victims of inhuman and degrading treatment endanger the lives of children. A
France is the European Union country with the largest population in these camps: about 80 women and 200 children. This does not prevent Paris from becoming one of the toughest repatriation policies. Following the “case by case” doctrine, only 35 children have been repatriated in three years. Half of them were orphans, but for others, mothers were ordered to sign the resignation of their parental rights. Since January 2021, France has not made any repatriation against several of its neighbors.
The northern countries are the most repatriated
In the beginning, mainly European countries “Disobedient”With the withdrawal of Patrick Baudouin, lawyer and president of the League of Human Rights, various developments have been observed. From “More meritorious”, In his words, include the countries of Northern Europe: Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, Finland and Sweden. A certain number of them have adopted a policy similar to the one applicable in Belgium: to bring back children, but also their mothers, to judge them in their country.
Finland was one of the first European countries to host the expulsion. In 2021, Finnish diplomat Juicy Tanner predicted this “Because children’s rights are paramount, mothers can follow them.”. Germany has also organized a number of repatriations since the end of 2019 An attitude associated with a court decision that ordered the government to repatriate a woman and her three children The Netherlands even repatriated five women and their eleven children in February 2022 with the aim of bringing these mothers to justice.
On the French side, a number of groups and NGOs urged Emanuel Macron to honor France’s commitments at the international level, especially the International Convention on the Rights of the Child. On February 24, France was condemned by the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child for its violations. “The best interests of the child”, From “Right to Life” And the right of children to protection “Against inhuman and degrading treatment”.
The argument is not valid for the association
The presiding judge of the League of Human Rights said the arguments put forward by the authorities were not acceptable. “France says these women must be tried there, but it is within its jurisdiction, especially since the region does not constitute a state.” Patrick Bowdoin believes. In fact, France has issued several international arrest warrants for these women, with the aim of bringing them to justice.
In the Syrian camp, various profiles of “Daesh’s wives” of French women
Lawyers also often condemn the security argument put forward. “Leaving these people there would be much more dangerous, they could fall into the hands of jihadists again. A The real blockade, according to him, is the will of the head of state to satisfy public opinion.
The families of the children detained in the camps have appealed to the European Court of Human Rights after several failures in French courts. His decision should be made next month.