Sunday 05 April 2020

Dutch prosecutors want to bring more jihadis home to face terrorism trials

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The public prosecution department wants to bring more Dutch jihadis back to the Netherlands to face prosecution, the NRC reported on Thursday.

In total, officials told the paper that they have issued repatriation requests for 29 people to face trial in the Netherlands for terrorism offences.

The government has stated repeatedly that it will not bring back Dutch nationals who went to fight with Islamic militant groups in Syria and Iraq. Instead, it would like to set up a tribunal in the region.

According to the NRC, the list includes the names of several people who are being held in prison camps and that all the people included have said they are willing to be present at their own trials.

The Netherlands has sentenced several jihadis to lengthy jail terms in absentia.

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Some 55 adults and 90 children are currently being held in Syrian detention camps, according to the Dutch security service AIVD.

Earlier this week, the US ambassador to the Netherlands Pete Hoekstra said Dutch hopes for a regional tribunal were a ‘non starter’ and the only option is to bring them home.

The US remains willing to help repatriate people who went to fight in Syria, Hoekstra said, adding that ‘we believe these individuals are least dangerous if they are back in their home country.’

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