Dominic Raab reviewing whether British IS fighters can return home

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Dominic Raab has said a policy that British nationals who fought for the Islamic State group should face justice in the region instead of being brought home is under review.

In response to an urgent question in the Commons, the Foreign Secretary said he did not want to see British foreign fighters return, but due to the “fluid situation” in Syria this may change.

Former Conservative minister Mark Harper said many fighters were no longer under detention in the region and asked Mr Raab whether a “different policy” was required in order to keep the UK safe.

Mr Raab said: “We don't want to see foreign fighters return to the UK. We think the right course is for them to face justice, if that's possible and practical, in the region.”

“But of course he is right to say that, given the fluid situation, we're going to have to keep all of this under review.”

Earlier, Mr Raab said the UK government had been “candid and clear” with Turkey over its invasion of northern Syria.

“This is not the action we expected from an ally. It is reckless, it is counter-productive and it plays straight into the hands of Russia and indeed the Assad regime,” he said.

Despite the strong words, the Foreign Secretary said the UK will continue selling weapons to Turkey.

However, it will not grant new export licences for arms that may be used against Kurds in Syria.

Turkey’s offensive against the Kurds began after Donald Trump announced US troops would withdraw from Syria

The United Nations estimates at least 160,000 people have been displaced in the past week.

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