France currently welcomes 225 minors, Éric Dupond-Moretti announces

Of these 225 minors currently in France, 217 remained in the Iraqi-Syrian area, eight in Afghanistan or Yemen and two thirds are under the age of ten.

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France currently hosts 225 minors who have stayed in the camps of jihadist families in the Middle East, Éric Dupond-Moretti announced on Wednesday 5 October before the Senate Committee on Law. According to the Minister of Justice, “most of them returned with their parents expelled from Turkey, others returned spontaneously “, while 77 minors were repatriated by the French authorities.

Of these 77 repatriated minors, 71 came from Rojava in Syrian Kurdistan, seven from Iraq. These minors were repatriated during seven operations carried out in succession between March 15, 2019 and October 4, 2022. The largest operation took place on July 5, when 35 minors were repatriated from Syria.

Of these 225 minors, eleven are currently being prosecuted for “terrorist criminal association”, adds the Keeper of the seals. They are the oldest repatriated children who are now adults. 22 of these children are orphans and 77 were born in the area.

“It’s nice to reconcile humanity and pragmatism. Everyone has had a traumatic experience”.

Eric Dupond-Moretti


Éric Dupond-Moretti estimates that there are still 200 jihadist wives in the area. Last July Laurent Nunez, who at the time was still coordinator of intelligence and the fight against terrorism, reported that there were still about 100 women and almost 250 children in the Syrian camps.

On September 14, 2022, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) condemned France for failing to adequately study the requests for repatriation of the families of jihadists to Syria. “We have no obligation to repatriate, the ECHR says nothing different”, explained the minister. “In view of this sentence, it is necessary to consent to the appeal in case of denial”.

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