ISIL evacuation deal sparks Iraqi outrage

31 August, 2017, 00:31 | Author: Ora Austin
  • SDF soldiers retake the children’s hospital in southwestern Raqqa

"ISIS is a global threat, and relocating terrorists from one place to another is not a lasting solution".

"Russian and pro-regime counter-ISIS words ring hollow when they allow known terrorists to transit territory under their control", wrote the press desk of the Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve, in an email.

Earlier, the United States envoy to the coalition condemned the evacuation, which was negotiated by the Lebanese army, the Syrian army and its ally Hezbollah.

The Lebanese soldiers were among 30 troops and police kidnapped by Daesh and terrorists linked to al-Nusra Front, a former affiliate of al-Qaeda, in August 2014 when they briefly overran the Lebanese border town of Arsal.

"It had no choice but to accept our conditions", he added, emphasizing Hezbollah's role in revealing the fate of the slaughtered Lebanese soldiers and securing their bodies.

"Our only consolation is that we knew the fate of the soldiers", the president said.

"They know that Iraqis destroyed their second biggest city [Mosul] so that Daesh fighters would not escape and Iraq's neighbours would not be harmed".

He praised the Lebanese army for carrying out the operation that ended with the ISIL deal.

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The agreement saw the air-conditioned buses move the ISIS members from Qalamoun on the Lebanese border to the town of Abu Kamal in the eastern Syrian province of Deir Ezzor.

Major General Abbas Ibrahim, Lebanon's chief negotiator and intelligence chief, said Monday that his government's decision to allow ISIS militants and their families to flee "is permissible because Lebanon adheres to the philosophy of a state that does not exact revenge", but the decision has been met with controversy. "Their souls are my responsibility", Gen Aoun told reporters.

Lebanon has identified the bodies of six of its soldiers found along the Syrian border in an area held by Islamic State until three days ago, sources in the president's office said.

On Tuesday, the ISIS fighters reached in Deir al-Zour province in eastern Syria, near the border with Iraq.

Buses carrying members of the Islamic State militant group (ISIS) and their families included a number of children as well, raising concerns as to the humanitarian consequences of a US strike on the convoy. "The Coalition is monitoring the movement of these fighters in real-time".

USA officials have criticized the transfer of hundreds of militants and civilians who are bound for an IS-held area near the Iraqi border, saying the extremists should be killed on the battlefield.

"According to an agreement between ISIL terrorists, the Lebanese Hizbollah and the Syrian regime, hundreds of ISIL militants left the Lebanese border areas and were taken with their arms and ammunition toward the Iraqi border areas", the Kurdistan Region Security Council said in a statement released on Tuesday.

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused Iran on Monday of building missile sites in Syria and Lebanon to produce precision-guided missiles that could be used against Israel, the Guardian reported.

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