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Syria crisis

Over 100 murders in Syria’s al-Hol camp since Jan 2021: UN

Published: Updated:

More than one hundred people, including many women, have been murdered in a Syrian detention camp in just 18 months, the UN said Tuesday, demanding countries repatriate their citizens.

The al-Hol camp is becoming increasingly unsafe and the child detainees are being condemned to a life with no future, said Imran Riza, the UN resident coordinator in Syria.

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Al-Hol, in the Kurdish-controlled northeast, was meant as a temporary detention facility.

However, it still holds about 56,000 people, mostly Syrians and Iraqis, some of whom maintain links with the ISIS terrorist group, which seized swathes of Iraq and Syria in 2014.

The rest are citizens of other countries, including children and other relatives of ISIS fighters.

Some 94 percent of the detainees are women and children, Riza, who has visited al-Hol a handful of times, told reporters in Geneva.

“It’s a very harsh place and it’s become an increasingly unsafe place,” he said.

There have been “around 106 murders since January last year in the camp” and “many” of the victims were women, he added.

“There’s a great deal of gender-based violence... There’s a lot of no-go areas.”

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said violence was spiking in the camp, with another murder Tuesday – the seventh since June 11.

Out of 24 people murdered inside the camp this year, 16 were women, the Observatory added.

Riza said there were around 27,000 Iraqi detainees, 18-19,000 Syrians and around 12,000 third-country citizens.

While there have been some repatriations to Iraq, many other countries were refusing to take back their citizens.

He said the UN was encouraging them to do so, and they “need to be accepting their people back.”

Read more:

Syria airport hit by Israeli airstrike to reopen on June 23: Ministry

ISIS kills nine pro-regime fighters in eastern Syria: War monitor

Three Iraqis killed in Syria’s al-Hol camp: Monitor

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