Nearly 300 Syrians suspected of belonging to the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group have been freed because they have “no blood on their hands”, Kurdish authorities who were holding them said.
Their release was announced late on Saturday by the semi-autonomous Kurdish administration of northern Syria, which said in a statement that 283 Syrians had been set free.
The statement said they were men who “have no Syrian blood on their hands”, suggesting that they did not take part in any fighting. “They had lost their way… violated the traditions of the Syrian society and the law, and some of them had been deceived… but they remain our Syrian children,” it said. Releasing them is a gesture of “cooperation, fraternity and clemency,” said the statement posted on the website of the U.S.-backed, Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).