In Raqqa, Syria, a group of Kurdish and Arab allies established a civil council to administer Raqqa after ISIS has been driven out. The Kurdish and Arab allies are a part of the US-led coalition in Syria. The civil council recently pardoned 83 low-ranking ISIS militants from punishment for ISIS’ terror. The council acknowledged that they would never pardon higher-ranking ISIS militants and that pardoning these 83 will contribute to stability post-ISIS. Many of these militants were forced to cooperate with ISIS or had no other way to make money. Hopefully, the underlying causes that sent many militants to ISIS’ ranks can be addressed (like poverty and lack of employment opportunities) so people will not feel the need to join extremist groups.
06/26/2017 Syria (Christian Post) –A civil council established by Kurdish and Arab allies of the U.S.-led coalition, which is likely to administer Syria’s Raqqa city after it is freed from Islamic State, has pardoned 83 of the terror group’s low-ranking militants with the hope to promote stability, according to reports.
Islamic State, also known as IS, ISIS, ISIL or Daesh, has been operating from Raqqa for the past three years, but is now losing ground as the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces close in on the group. IS could be defeated within months, it is believed.
“We would never release senior Daesh officials or anyone who has blood on their hands,” Omar Aloush, a senior member of the Raqqa Civil Council, told Reuters. “We are giving these men a second chance.”
The council member added that the former IS members, some of whom had surrendered, would be integrated into society and given a chance to attend schools.
“There were no opportunities before they arrived,” a 17-year-old IS member, Kays al-Hadi, was quoted as saying, as he explained why he joined the terror group.
“I had no choice but to cooperate. They paid me $115 a month,” said Abdel Rahman Kalas, 43, who worked in the IS department that imposed taxes on Raqqa citizens.