In al-Hol statelet: 70000 people mostly members of the Organization’s families including 10000 foreigners whose countries have abandoned, and the tragic humanitarian and health conditions claim the lives of more than 385 children
Although the military phase in defeating the terrorist Organization of the “Islamic State” is over; the battle is not over yet… this is how everyone realizes in the light of the worsening crises which were caused by the control of the Organization for nearly 4 years of vast territories in Syria and Iraq, and perhaps the most prominent of these crises which were caused by the existence of the “Islamic State” Organization is the families and children left behind by fighters of the Organization, especially after the end of the last battle north Syria, al-Baghuz battle, this crisis is specifically represented by “al-Hol” camp in the southeast of al-Hasaka which has become a small “state” for the “Islamic State” Organization; or at least, for families of the Organization, where, according to the information and statistics of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights: at least 70422 people mostly of families of the Organization and they are: 8552 Iraqi families their numbered 30774 people, and 8334 Syrian families numbered 29484 members, while the rest are 10146 people and they are of European, Asian, African and other nationalities among 3038 families.
On the 13th of March 2019, the director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights Rami Abdurrahman warned in a television interview that al-Hol Camp would be transformed into “a state of ISIS or at least families of the Organization,” which has already happened by monitoring the events and developments that have taken place inside the camp throughout nearly 4 months since announcing the defeat of the Organization and the increase of number of people in “al-Hol Camp” to more than 73 thousand people, and then the number of people inside the camp decreased through smuggling operations of the women members of the Organization, or by delivering some women and children by the Syria Democratic Forces to their families with mediation of some tribal Sheikhs.
Humanitarian Catastrophe and International Silence, Children Die in The Statelet Of Death
Crises of the camp or the “statelet” do not end, but the most notable of them are the humanitarian conditions, poor health, and living conditions, and the shortage of medicines, food, and medical care, where failure of international Organizations to provide assistance to the camps’ population has caused the deaths of at least 386 children under the age of eighteen due to a shortage of medical care, and since the beginning of January 2019 according to statistics of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and what has been confirmed by reliable sources for the Observatory: most of the children who died are nationals of Britain, Portugal, Russia, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Belgium, China, Chechnya, Turkestan, Morocco, Tunisia, Maldives, Indonesia. Somalia, and India, as well as other nationalities from Asia, Europe, and Africa.
Reliable sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory that in case it was not possible to provide medical care for patients in al-Hol camp; they are transferred to other hospitals, they are: “al-Shaab” and “al-Hikmah” in al-Hasakah and “Faman” in Qameshly, and according to the sources: the camp’s residents suffer mainly from shortages of medical supplies and health care, in addition to food shortages as a result of the inaction of international Organizations towards what is happening in al-Hol camp, amid increase in numbers of people displaced to the camp in recent months, which has made the relief and local medical agency unable to continue securing requirements of tens of thousands who live in the camp, or the statelet of “al-Hol”, in addition to another problem, which is stealing aid and transferring it by some members of relief teams to people who payed bribes to them, making the aid reaches some people without others, which intensified the spread of diseases and worsening the health conditions and led to shortages in the medicines, food, and children’s supplies of diapers, milk, and children’s medicines.
According to reliable sources of the Syrian Observatory: the committees working in the camp who supervise the distribution of humanitarian aid, are taking bribes in exchange for distributing the equipment, tents, and aid stacked in stores of UNHCR, while reliable sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory that one of the administrators of distribution who is an employee of UNHCR and the United Nations, insults displaced people and considers them as members of the “Islamic State” Organization.
On the 3rd of July 2019, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitored the injury of several people of the families of members of the “Islamic State” Organization with burns, as a result of the breakout of fire in several tents inhabited by these families, and reliable sources indicated that the fires were caused by the lack of kitchens in the newly established sections, and because of that the families use unsafe means, reliable sources also pointed out that the poor humanitarian conditions in the “al-Hol Statelet” have worsened as hundreds of families of the Organization returned to live out in the open again, after a storm uprooted more than 100 tents in their camp’s area.
On the 18th of May 2018, the Director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed that the Syria Democratic Forces are the ones responsible medical care for al-Hol camp, but Organizations inside the camp are receiving huge funds from the European Union and international health care providers; in order to provide medical care to the camp’s residents, however, some assistance does not go to its designated destinations, and the health care and needs of the camp’s residents are not provided, and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has previously called for investigations by these international parties and supporters in these Organizations, to expose the corruption inside al-Hol camp, and as an emphasis on the critical humanitarian situation in “al-Hol Statelet”; “Doctors Without Borders” Organization said that “the humanitarian situation in al-Hol is critical, water comes sporadically, foods is not provided regularly, and the medical care is not acceptable,” while Will Turner, the area’s emergency program officer for Syria said: “many pregnant women are forced to give birth under their tents, and there are cases of children who have died in tents.”
Chaos and extremism, the “Statelet of Death” is a new bomb on its way to explode
The deplorable conditions of the camp do not stop at the point of poor health and food services provided to its residents, where a tension prevails throughout the camp as a result of chaos and extremism that dominates its population, making it a new bomb on its way to explode threatening to destabilize the area again, where from time to time some tensions, quarrels, and clashes take place inside al-Hol camp, include attacks by women members of the Organization against security units to demand the release of their detained husbands, or through clashes between families of the Organization against each other especially of different nationalities, not to mention the leaking of a video of some members women and children of families of the “Islamic State” Organization, sending a message to those who they call ” their mujahideen brothers”, calling on them to “save them from the prisons of the infidels”, stressing that they “used to live in the land of the caliphate, the State of Islam, bring back the pride of the caliphate,” the women added in the leaked video: “Do you think we will forget what you did to us in Baghuz you infidels? And do you think that by holding women in the rotten camp you will win over us?” also some children appeared in the same video saying: “we will destroy you one by one by the willing of Allah.”
Sources of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitored a fight between families of the Organization of Iraqi and Syrian nationalities, which injured several people, where the fight began when a displaced Syrian hit an Iraqi woman in the camp, then it turned into a battle with white weapons between both families, and on the 4th of July 2019 a woman from the family members of the “Islamic State” Organization stabbing a member of the Asayish forces from behind, but no information about the reasons behind it and the motives yet, followed by shooting by Asayish forces to disperse the crowd which came after the Asayish pursuit the lady, but she managed to disappear from sight and escape after tens of the families of the Organization gathering, reliable sources confirmed that insults and threats were observed by members of the organization saying to the camp’s protection members: “we want our husbands from your jails, we are not afraid of you, you must be afraid of us, we want to get out of the camp.” they also attacked a medical point in the camp and smashed its windows demanding the release of their men and relatives detained at prisons of Syria Democratic Forces.
On the 28th of July 2019, sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory that a woman of the families of the “State Organization” was injured in shooting by a women’s patrol of “Asayish” in al-Hol camp, after a group of women of the families of the Organization carried out a protest inside the camp, which made the “Asayish” patrol shoot to disperse the protesters, which injurie that woman.
Dollars for Escape: Complicity and Popular Discontent Due to Flee of Women of The “Islamic State” Organization
Over the past period and as the catastrophic humanitarian situation worsened, there has been an increase in escapes from the “statelet of death”, where many families of members and leaders of the “Islamic State” Organization have fled the camp through smugglers dealing with corrupt members of the Internal Security Forces (Asayish) who protect the camp, where smuggling operations are carried out periodically in exchange for large sums of money, On the 26th of March 2019, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitored clashes between the “Asayish” who are guarding the camp against smugglers in the vicinity of the camp, after an attempt to smuggle several families of members of the Organization and move them to new destinations.
On the 20th of July 2019, Syrian Observatory for Human Rights learned from several reliable sources that the Syria Democratic Forces arrested 2 of their members from one of the checkpoints of Manbij city in the northeastern countryside of Aleppo, and in the details obtained by the Syrian Observatory: 2 of the SDF (one of them is a commander in People’s Protection Units) smuggled 5 women of the families of the “Islamic State” organization from al-Hol camp for up to 10000$ USD for each woman, where they were discovered at the last checkpoint in Manbij city northeast of Aleppo and they were arrested yesterday, amid great public discontent about the smuggling and how they were able to pass through all the checkpoints undetected, which is not a new incidents of its kind, where the Syrian Observatory published on the 9th of July 2019 that reliable sources told the Syrian Observatory that smuggling operations continue within al-Hol “statelet” at the far southeast of al-Hasaka Province, where the smuggling of women and children of family members of the “Islamic State” organization takes place towards factions’ controlled areas in the Syrian north, in return for huge amounts of money through the Smuggling networks, the sources added to the Syrian Observatory that the amounts of money vary between the Syrian people, Arabs, and foreigners, where the families of the organization of foreign nationalities are smuggled in return for amounts of money starting from 5000$ US dollars a person, while the amounts of money for families of the organization of Syrian nationality start from $500 USD up to $2,500 per person.
The same sources confirmed to the Syrian Observatory the involvement of many entities within al-Hol “statelet” in these smuggling operations, from military figures of the intelligence there to the medical crews who are active in the camp, as well as other groups, including members of the Internal Security (Asayish), sources revealed to the Syrian Observatory that some of the group’s families fled towards the Turkish territory or areas of control of the “Euphrates Shield” Operation Forces in the northeastern sector of Aleppo countryside, by paying to smugglers about $650 per person.
Guarantees of The Clans: A Legal Exit Means Through a “Guarantor”
Amid attempts to contain Crisis of “al-Hol” Statelet, the Syria Democratic Forces organized a meeting of the Syrian tribes in Ain Issa town in the northwestern countryside of al-Raqqah, where leaders and representatives of the Syria Democratic Forces met with hundreds of representatives of Syrian tribes on the 3rd of May 2019, and about one month or so after the conference, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights documented the exit of hundreds of displaced people from al-Hol camp, where sources of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights revealed that more than 900 people mostly women and children of Deir Ezzor, al-Raqqah, and al-Tabaqa”, have gotten out of camp towards their areas east of Euphrates, and according to reliable information, those who go out to the Syria Democratic Forces’ controlled areas have to secure a guarantor for those who are foreigners to the area, meaning that the son of Deir Ezzor province cannot go to Manbij without a guarantor there, the sources revealed to the Syrian Observatory that the process of exit of other batches will take place toward various areas in the Syrian territory in the coming period, against the background of the meetings that took place in “Ain Issa” in early May.
On the 24th of July 2019, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitored the exit of a new batch of tens of ISIS families from al-Hol camp, and in the details obtained by the Syrian Observatory: more than 125 children and women among about 30 families of the Organization have gotten out of “al-Hol State” towards Manbij city, which is under the control of the Syria Democratic Forces, and sources of the Syrian Observatory informed that all of them are from Manbij city and were taken out in response to demands of tribal elders in the “Meeting of Syrian Tribes”.
Attempts to contain crisis of al-Hol camp and reduce its population do not stop at the limit of agreements with the tribes, where the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights obtained confirmed information about an agreement with the Iraqi government to get the Iraqi families of the Organization out of the camp and transfer them to the Iraqi territory, however, sources of the Syrian Observatory indicated that there is a situation of refusal among the Iraqi civilians and families of the Organization to be handed over to the Iraqi authorities, fearing for their lives of the possibility of issuing execution against them, especially since the Iraqis make up about half of people in al-Hol camp.
The West Abandons Its Responsibility: Attempts to Avoid Taking Back Families Of the “Islamic State” Organization
With all the attempts to reduce the population density within “al-Hol Statelet”, the biggest problem concerns those who are of the western nationalities and present in the camp, where the director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights Rami Abdurrahman, stressed on the 18th of May 2019 that western countries refuse to talk or raise the issue of al-Hol camp, and do not address the issue of the humanitarian situation within it, so they do not become forced to take their citizens of women and children back to their country, pointing out that what is happening is deliberate in order to keep the situation of al-Hol camp away inside Syrian territory, and in an attempt to exploit the situation, on the 19th of June 2019, the Russian and Syrian coordination headquarters accused the United Nations of reducing the scale of the humanitarian disaster in al-Hol camp, “We are concerned by the assessments of some UN bodies regarding the situation in al-Hol camp, which significantly reduce the range of the humanitarian disaster in the camp,” a joint statement of both headquarters said, it also added: “to date, not even one of the problems experienced by refugees has been solved, contrary to the repeated U.S. promises… about 72000 people -91% of whom are women and children- live in al-Hol camp in terrible conditions, especially that 65% of whom are children under the age of 12.”
Despite some western countries’ abandonment, some countries have received several children through their representatives, also Kamal Akif, the spokesman of the Self-Administration of north and East Syria said in a statement on the 5th of June 2019, that “the Kurdish authorities in Syria have returned to the United States 2 American women and 6 children of families of Jihadis in the “Islamic State” Organization,” and he added: “This was done by a request from the U.S. government and the free and voluntary desire by the American citizens to return home, without any pressure or coercion,” and days before that, the Kurdish authorities returned 5 Norwegian orphans of ISIS-linked families to their countries, and about one week after sending 148 Uzbek women and children to their countries.
The crisis in al-Hol camp or the “state of death” continues to threaten more instability northeast Syria, which require decisive international intervention to improve the humanitarian conditions of the camp’s residents, and provide health and food care and provide for their needs, as well as to investigate the smuggling of family members of the “Islamic State” Organization, and the corruption in distributing aid and services to the displaced people inside the camp, not to mention the need to intervene to contain the extremism and chaos inside the “al-Hol State”, so that the situation in the camp -which become a “time bomb” threatens to explode in the face of the world at any time- does not explode.