'We Are No Hotel for ISIS': Turkish Minister Vows to Repatriate Foreign Fighters

Interior Minister says it is 'unacceptable and irresponsible' for for countries to revoke citizenship of Islamic State suspects

Men, allegedly affiliated with the Islamic State group, sit on the floor in a prison in the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakeh on October 26, 2019. 
AFP

Turkey warns it will send captured Islamic State suspects back to their home countries as it criticized several European nations for revoking their citizenship.

"We are not a hotel for anybody's Daesh members," Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said in Ankara on Saturday, adding that countries like Britain and the Netherlands found "the easy way" out by making Islamic State members "stateless."

He didn't specify the number of alleged Islamic State members or their families that Turkey has in captivity since it launched a military operation in north-eastern Syria on October 9.

A fighter with the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) stands guard in a prison where men allegedly affiliated with Isis group are kept in the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakeh on October 26, 2019. 
AFP

"Let's say I keep him in jail for a while. Then he is released from jail. Should I give your terrorist citizenship?" Soylu said, adding that "we will send them back to their own countries."

He called it "unacceptable and irresponsible" for countries to revoke the citizenship of Islamic State suspects and leave Turkey to deal with their status.

Turkey had Dutch and British suspects in custody as well as those from other countries, he said.

Several European countries have refused to repatriate Islamic State fighters and their wives and widows held by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

The SDF, which fought alongside the US to oust Islamic State and is believed to be holding an estimated 10,000 militants, has been under severe pressure since the US troop pull back and Turkey's incursion. Several countries fear the ensuing chaos will enable Islamic State to re-group.