Iraq calls on Arab Summit to ‘take clear position’ on Syrian crisis

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi speaks during the Tokyo Conference on Supporting Job Creation and Vocational Training to Facilitate Weapons Reduction for Iraqi Society in Tokyo, Japan, April 5, 2018. (Reuters)
Updated 14 April 2018
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Iraq calls on Arab Summit to ‘take clear position’ on Syrian crisis

  • The 29th Arab League summit will be held in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, on Sunday.

BAGHDAD: Iraq on Saturday called on Arab leaders to "take a clear position" about Syria at a summit planned in Saudi Arabia on Sunday, Iraqi state television said, citing a foreign ministry statement.

The Iraqi foreign ministry also warned that Western air strikes Saturday on Syria were a "very dangerous" development that could fuel an extremist resurgence in the region.


A statement by foreign ministry spokesman Ahmad Mahjoub said the raids carried out by the United States, France and Britain were "a very dangerous development... that will provide an opportunity for the expansion of terrorism after it was destroyed in Iraq and largely pushed back in Syria". 


The Iraqi government declared victory over Daesh, which it considers a terrorist organisation, in December after pushing Daesh militants out of their final holdouts along the border with Syria.


But the group retains the capacity to strike despite losing control of vast swathes of Iraqi territory it seized in 2014 and still clings to pockets of desert in war-torn Syria.

With agencies.


Kosovan women returned from Syria face house arrest

Updated 24 April 2019
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Kosovan women returned from Syria face house arrest

  • Four alleged militants, all men, were arrested the moment they were brought to the country
  • The state prosecution said all 32 repatriated women are under investigation

PRISTINA: Kosovo prosecutors have requested the house arrest of 16 women repatriated from Syria, saying they are suspected of joining or taking part as foreign fighters there.

The women appeared on Wednesday in court in Pristina, a day after 10 other women were put under house arrest. None have been charged with a crime.

Four alleged militants, all men, were arrested the moment they were brought to the country.

The women and children were sent to the Foreign Detention Centre in the outskirts of Pristina but were freed to go home after 72 hours.

Ten women were seen entering Pristina Basic Court in a police escort on Tuesday. The court said in a statement later that they had been placed under house arrest on charges of joining foreign armed groups and terrorist groups in Syria and Iraq from 2014 to 2019.

The state prosecution said all 32 repatriated women are under investigation and more of them are expected to appear in front of judges on Wednesday. The prosecution has yet to file charges.

After the collapse of Islamic State’s self-declared caliphate in Syria and Iraq, countries around the world are wrestling with how to handle militants and their families seeking to return to their home countries.

Kosovo's population is nominally 90 percent Muslim, but the country is largely secular in outlook. More than 300 of its citizens travelled to Syria since 2012 and 70 men who fought alongside militant groups were killed.

Police said 30 Kosovan fighters, 49 women and eight children remain in the conflict zones. The government said it plans to bring back those who are still there.

International and local security agencies have previously warned of the risk posed by returning fighters. In 2015, Kosovo adopted a law making fighting in foreign conflicts punishable by up to 15 years in prison.

On Saturday, 110 Kosovar citizens — the four alleged foreign fighters, 32 women and 74 children — were returned to Kosovo with assistance from the United States, the first such move for a European country.

Authorities say there are still 87 Kosovar citizens in Syria.