Monday, 28 November, 2022
E-paper

Australia to repatriate citizens from Syria

Australia's government said Monday its "overriding priority" is to protect its citizens, following reports that it will repatriate dozens of women and children from detention camps in Syria.

Australian media, led by a weekend story in The Guardian, reported that the government had decided to bring home about 20 Australian women and 40 children from the camps.

A spokesperson for Home Affairs Minister Clare O'Neil did not confirm the reported repatriation, saying only that the government would protect its
citizens.

The Australian women and children have lived in the Al-Hol and Roj detention camps in Kurdish-controlled northeastern Syria since the 2019 collapse of the Islamic State group's "caliphate".

Kurdish authorities have repeatedly called on countries to repatriate their citizens from the crowded camps, of which Al-Hol is the largest.