Coalition airstrike targets mosque used by Daesh

A Daesh flag is pictured above a destroyed house near the Clock Square in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 18, 2017. (Reuters)
Updated 21 October 2018
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Coalition airstrike targets mosque used by Daesh

  • The coalition said the use of the mosque as a headquarters by Daesh caused it to lose its protected status
  • The coalition says Daesh deliberately chose the mosque and repeatedly used it to plan and coordinate attacks

AL-UDEID AIR BASE, Qatar: The US-led coalition fighting the Daesh group says an airstrike on a mosque in Syria targeted an insurgent command and control center and killed a dozen fighters.
The coalition in a statement says that while the law of war protects mosques, the use of the building as a headquarters by Daesh caused it to lose that protected status.
Syrian state media and the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said last week that strikes in Sousa near the Iraq border killed and wounded dozens, including civilians and Daesh fighters.
The coalition says Daesh deliberately chose the mosque and repeatedly used it to plan and coordinate attacks on US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces. Sousa is in the last Daesh-held pocket in Syria where those forces have been fighting extremists for weeks.


Syria force calls for international court to try Daesh extremists

Updated 30 sec ago
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Syria force calls for international court to try Daesh extremists

  • SDF said this is a way to organize fair and just tribunals
  • The group said they do not have the capability to hold the detainees

AIN ISSA, Syria: US-backed forces in Syria Monday called for the establishment of an international court in the country to try suspected Daesh group extremists.

The announcement came two days after the militant group’s “caliphate” was declared defeated.

“We call on the international community to establish a special international tribunal in northeast Syria to prosecute terrorists,” the Syrian Democratic Forces said in a statement.

In this way, “trials can be conducted fairly and in accordance with international law and human rights covenants and charters,” it said.

Syria’s Kurds have previously warned that despite the demise of the Daesh proto-state, the thousands of foreign extremists they have detained are a time-bomb the world urgently needs to defuse.

According to the SDF, more than 5,000 militants — Syrian and foreign — have been captured since January.

The Kurdish administration in northeastern Syria has warned it does not have capacity to detain so many people.

But the home countries of suspected Daesh members are reluctant to take them back, due to potential security risks and the likely public backlash.

“The Kurdish administration in northeast Syria has appealed to the international community to shoulder its responsibilities toward members of the terrorist organization detained by Kurdish security forces,” read Monday’s statement.

“But unfortunately there was no response,” it said.

It called on the international community, particularly countries that have nationals detained, to support the establishment of an international tribunal, calling for legal and logistical cooperation and coordination.

In the past, two international tribunals were created by the international community: the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), which tried genocide perpetrators in the African country, and the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, which tried those accused of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes in wars that tore apart the Balkans in the 1990s.