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ISIS Network of Tunnels Found in Syria's al-Hol Camp

ISIS Network of Tunnels Found in Syria's al-Hol Camp

Friday, 5 August, 2022 - 06:30
Over 30 murder crimes in al-Hol camp since 2022 (Asharq Al-Awsat)

The Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (Rojava) has found a network of trenches and tunnels under al-Hol camp, east of al-Hasakah.

The security sources said these trenches and tunnels were used by sleeper cells loyal to the ISIS terrorist organization to smuggle persons and carry out murders and assassination attempts.

The ongoing investigations revealed that the tunnel connects one of the camp sectors to the outer wall and from there to the surrounding areas.

A day earlier, the Rojava security forces thwarted a mass escape through a truck designated for transporting construction materials.

The truck was transporting 39 children and 17 women from 56 ISIS families. The camp witnessed 728 escape attempts since March 2020.

A video recording inside the camp showed how tunnels were dug with primitive tools, covered with metal and wooden panels for camouflage, amid a group of tents inhabited by displaced Syrians and Iraqi refugees.

Escaping Incidents are on the rise in the camp, which houses about 56,000, most of whom are displaced Syrians and Iraqi refugees.

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees records, 90 percent of the residents of al-Hol camp are women and children.

The security source and director of al-Hol camp, Hamrin Hassan, said that sleeper cells inside and outside the center are linked to human smuggling networks loyal to ISIS.

Hassan explained that they communicate with the terrorist organization through social media platforms, and the first destination after the escape is the Idlib governorate or other areas in northern Syria under Turkish influence.

After that, the same networks transport the escapees from al-Hol into Turkish territory and from there to their homelands, often done in exchange for large sums of money.

Hassan believes that the al-Hol camp is an international issue, asserting that concerned countries must take quick, drastic decisions and measures to provide appropriate solutions.

She explained that no international governments have submitted any proposal and refuse to receive their citizens, claiming they carry an extremist ideology that threatens their societies.

The official warned against not solving this issue, indicating that these families' presence on the border might spread and increase ISIS danger inside and outside the camp.

She stressed that measures must be taken to return them to their countries of origin, asserting that providing humanitarian aid is not enough.

Over 30 murders have occurred in the camp since the beginning of 2022.

Hassan appealed to the international community to save the children who fell victim to their parents' decisions, warning against their extreme background and upbringing.

ISIS families are like a ticking bomb that threatens the entire world, not only Syria, said the director.

She asserted that the camp is not a suitable environment for raising children, who comprise 65 percent of the camp's population.

Over the past years, the Internal Security Forces launched several campaigns and operations in coordination with the international coalition forces and the US army. They arrested several persons involved in human smuggling, including ISIS females, on charges of forming terrorist cells to smuggle the organization's families.

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