ISIL foreign fighters may face death penalty: Iraqi President
BAGHDAD - Reuters
Iraqi President Barham Salih said foreign ISIL fighters tried in Iraq could be handed death sentences, according to an interview published by Abu Dhabi-based newspaper The National on March 8.
The ISIL fighters "will be tried in accordance to Iraqi law and may be sentenced to death if found guilty" of killing Iraqis, the paper quoted Salih as saying on its website.
U.S.-backed YPG- Syrian offshoot of the illegal PKK- in Syria handed some 280 Iraqi and foreign suspected ISIL members last month, Iraq's military said. YPG is listed as a terror organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU.
More such handovers are expected under an agreement to transfer some 500 detainees held by the YPG.
Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi said Iraq would either help repatriate non-Iraqi ISIL detainees to their home countries, or prosecute those suspected of having committed crimes against Iraq and Iraqis.
Under Iraqi law those could face the death penalty.
Salih's remarks were the first public comments confirming that foreign ISIL fighters could face execution in Iraq.
"There are certain cases in which some of these foreign fighters have been implicated in cases of terrorism on Iraqi soil or against Iraqi citizens. Here Iraqi law will take precedence," he said.
Iraq has said, however, that it does not expect to have to deal with all ISIL militants transferred from Syria.
"To laden Iraq with this issue on behalf of the world, is too much to ask of Iraq," Salih said.