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Syria: British Nationals Abroad

Foreign and Commonwealth Office written question – answered on 31st October 2019.

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Photo of Caroline Lucas Caroline Lucas Green, Brighton, Pavilion

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, whether he is taking steps to help ensure that UK nationals detained at Kurdish-run detention facilities in Northern Syria are not (a) taken into custody by Syrian Government forces and (b) transferred to Iraq.

Photo of Andrew Murrison Andrew Murrison Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

Any decision in relation to the continued detention, transfer or prosecution of detainees is ultimately a matter for authorities under whose jurisdiction the individuals are detained. The British Government is clear that those individuals who have fought for, or supported Daesh, whatever their nationality, should face justice through a fair trial in the most appropriate jurisdiction. The UK will work with international partners, as well as partners in the region who can assist in establishing an appropriate pathway to justice within their territory or legal systems. Any internationally-supported justice mechanism must respect human rights and the rule of law as well as ensure fair trials and due process.

The UK has significant human rights concerns about trials of Daesh-related suspects in domestic courts of Iraq and regime-held areas of Syria including the use of the death penalty, which the UK opposes in all circumstances, as a matter of principle.

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