Malaysians stranded in Syria camps pleading to come back home this Ramadan

Women and Children detained at Al Hol camp in eastern Syria – Photo Credit Ivor Prickett (New York Times)

KUALA LUMPUR: Thirty-nine Malaysians detained in Syria are contacting the Malaysian authorities to help them come home this fasting month of Ramadan, local media reported.

 “They have contacted us and said they want to return to Malaysia. However, this involves a lot of parties and we need to gather them in one place,” Bukit Aman Counter-Terrorism Division principal assistant director Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay was quoted by Bernama as saying at the Ramadan break-of-fast organised by the Bukit Aman Special Branch E8 Division here last night.

Ayob Khan said, among the Malaysian detainees in Syria camp (at the Al-Hasakah prison) are 10 men (adults), 12 boys and six girls, and 11 women whom husbands believed to have been died.

According to Ayob Khan, the police are considering to bring all of them back to Malaysia, but must take the consent of various quarters.

The Star Online has also quoted him saying, “upon their return, those suspected of having been involved in terrorism activities with ISIS will be arrested and questioned.

“During the questioning process, counsellors, psychologists and ustaz (Islamic religious teachers) will provide counselling, advice and evaluate them so that they will not get involved in terrorism again.”

There are more than 65 Malaysians still stranded in Syria, Police said.

According to The New York Times, more than 40,000 foreign fighters and their families came from 80 countries to help build the Islamic State or the so called `caliphate`  in Iraq and Syria. Most of them have been either killed or detained in camps and prisons across eastern Syria, Iraq and Libya.

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Graduate with a Master of Mass Communication. 10 years working experience in the media and broadcasting.

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