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UN denounces the transfer of Iraqi families to the former territory of ISIS


According to the United Nations, these transfers are "unorganized" while the families concerned, suspected of having helped the Islamic State, risk retaliation.

Iraqis from Hammam Al-Alil camp are sent back to Kirkuk province on August 27. ZAID AL-OBEIDI / AFP

Amnesty International has already called on the Iraqi authorities to stop these "premature" returns. On Monday, 2 September, the UN also denounced the conditions under which Baghdad has transferred 1,600 displaced people to Iraq. The authorities are seeking to close the camps as soon as possible, to the chagrin of human rights defenders, who believe that their dismissal puts them in danger.

"The lack of organization and communication with the concerned communities and humanitarian partners is worrying," said the UN's coordinator for humanitarian action in Iraq, Marta Ruedas, in a statement. For about ten days, Baghdad has begun the transfer of "about 300 families" from various provinces of Iraq to their home region, Nineveh, in the north-west, where Mosul, the former "capital" , is located. Self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS) group in Iraq.

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Families, potentially revenge targets

For human rights defenders, these families, accused for many by their home communities for supporting or joining IS, are at risk of revenge. Their transfers "were often made at the last minute and visibly unorganized," while some "would have received threatening phone calls from people in their home area warning them of their return," says the UN.

"Despite these disturbing facts , " law enforcement officials "confiscated their identity papers and told them they would only be returned to them once on board the convoys," the UN says . These families, suspected for many to be relatives of jihadists, are already living under the threat of retaliation in the camps, said the UN. On Sunday, "three grenades were thrown from outside on Bassatine camp", north of Baghdad.

In addition, most of their children have not been registered with the civil registry and can not attend school or have access to care. On Wednesday, Iraqi security forces escorted displaced women and children to a dozen buses to leave Hammam Al-Alil camp. Two years after Baghdad declared victory over IS, Iraq still has more than 1.6 million displaced.

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Source: lemonde

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