Islamic State: Iraq sentences French residents to demise

A member of the Iraqi rapid response forces walks past a wall painted with the black flag commonly used by Islamic State militants, at a hospital damaged by clashes during a battle between Iraqi forces and Islamic State militants in the Wahda district of Mosul, Iraq,Picture copyright

Picture caption

The three males had been discovered responsible of becoming a member of Islamic State (IS) (inventory picture)

Three Frenchmen have been sentenced to demise by an Iraqi court docket after being discovered responsible of becoming a member of the Islamic State (IS) militant group.

The lads – named as Kevin Gonot, Leonard Lopez and Salim Machou by AFP information company – have 30 days to attraction.

They had been amongst 12 French residents captured in Syria by US-backed fighters. In February they had been transferred to Iraq for trial.

The three are the primary IS suspects from France to be sentenced to demise.

How do international locations cope with IS returnees?
What number of IS international fighters are left?

France has but to react to Sunday’s court docket ruling in Baghdad. However when pressed on the difficulty in February, French President Emmanuel Macron declined to remark, saying it was a sovereign matter for Iraq.

Human rights teams have closely criticised the trials of suspected IS fighters in Iraq. Activists they are saying the courts usually depend on circumstantial proof or confessions made beneath duress.

What do we all know concerning the three?

Gonot, 32, is from south-eastern France. He’s believed to have entered Syria by way of Turkey to affix the al-Nusra Entrance, a department of al-Qaeda, earlier than pledging allegiance to IS.

He was arrested in Syria together with his mom, his spouse, and his half-brother in December 2017. A French court docket has additionally sentenced him in absentia to 9 years in jail.

Machou, 41, belonged to an IS cell composed of European fighters that has carried out assaults in Iraq and Syria and deliberate others in Paris and Brussels, in response to the Centre d’Analyse du Terrorisme (CAT), a French assume tank.

Lopez, a 32-year-old from Paris, additionally travelled together with his spouse and two kids to IS-held Mosul in northern Iraq earlier than coming into Syria, CAT quotes French investigators as saying.

Why had been they transferred to Iraq?

IS as soon as managed huge swathes of territory stretching throughout Syria and Iraq. After years of preventing, Iraq declared victory on its facet of the border in late 2017.

On the Syrian facet, the primary offensive was led by a US-backed alliance of Arab and Kurdish fighters, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). The group captured the final stronghold held by the jihadists in March.

An estimated 1,000 international fighters – in addition to many ladies and kids – are estimated to be in SDF custody.

Iraq has supplied to strive all international fighters held by the SDF. A number of a whole bunch have been transferred for trial by Iraqi courts however none have to this point been executed.

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What has occurred to foreigners who joined IS?

Greater than 41,000 individuals from dozens of nations are estimated to have joined IS in Syria and Iraq – a couple of quarter of them girls and kids.

Nearly 6,000 got here from Western Europe.

Roughly 850 individuals from the UK had been amongst them, together with 145 girls and 50 kids.

The overwhelming majority of IS militants are believed to have been both killed or captured. It’s unclear what number of foreigners have died.

Researchers counsel no less than 7,000 have travelled again to their international locations of origin.

These international locations have raised issues about bringing hardened jihadists again and the challenges of gathering proof to assist prosecutions.

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Media captionThe BBC speaks to 2 British militants who had been members of the so-called “IS Beatles”

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