THE HAGUE: Dutch police on Tuesday arrested two women who joined the Islamic State group in Syria after they were deported by Turkey to the Netherlands, prosecutors said.
The women, one of whom has two young children, were being held on terror charges following their arrival at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport, the prosecution service said in a statement.
Turkey began deporting foreign jihadists last week and has criticised Western countries for refusing to repatriate their citizens who left to join IS in Syria and Iraq.
“Two women who have returned from the battlefield of Islamic State in Syria have been deported by Turkey and arrested Tuesday evening on arrival at Schiphol airport,“ the Dutch prosecutors said.
“They are suspected of participating in a terrorist organisation. The Royal Military Police (who guard airports and ports) arrested the women and handed them over to the police.”
One of those arrested was a 23-year-old woman with two children aged three and four, who had been detained in January 2018 in Turkey, prosecutors said.
The other was a 25-year-old woman who had reported to the Dutch embassy in Ankara in October and asked for consular assistance to return.
The pair will appear before magistrates in the port city of Rotterdam on Friday, prosecutors said.
Earlier this month a Dutch court said the government must “actively” help repatriate children of women who joined the Islamic State group in Syria but the mothers themselves need not be taken back.
The ruling came after lawyers representing 23 jihadist women launched a lawsuit last week demanding the Netherlands return them and their 56 children from detention camps in northern Syria. — AFP