Kurdistan Regional Government hands over 1,400 ISIS detainees to Iraqi govt
After forming a joint judicial committee, Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) handed over about 1,400 detainees belonging to ISIS to the federal government in preparation for the extradition of more.
Dindar Zebari, the KRG coordinator for international advocacy said in a press release that Erbil has begun handing over detainees to Baghdad, adding that they were mostly from the governorates of Anbar, Saladin, Diyala and al-Hawija.
Zebari stated that the joint committee was formed with the federal government to tackle this issue, adding that all the detained individuals were investigated, but no court ruling was carried out against them by the KRG’s judiciary.
Zebari said that the KRG’s processes with the arrests are clear, indicating that the investigations are based on evidence, in addition to confessions by the accused, unlike what the Human Rights Watch reported, which is that the arrests are based on forced confessions, not hard evidence.
In a report published on Sunday, the Human Rights Watch said that Arab detainees serving their sentences in the Kurdistan region for their connection to ISIS face the risk of re-arrest after their release if they try to reunite with their families in areas controlled by Baghdad.
In response to the report that stated that the problem stems from a lack of coordination between the separate judicial systems of the KRG and the Iraqi government, Zebari said: “A joint committee of the highest judicial authorities has been formed, headed by the heads of three appeals courts in order to exchange information.”
Zebari also said that detainees are able to obtain documents proving their sentence was served in order to avoid re-arrest through lawyers, contrary to what the Human Rights Watch report said.