Justice minister "minded to bring back and prosecute IS fighters"

Belgian justice minister Koen Geens (Flemish Christian democrat) now says that he is minded to go in search of as much support as possible to bring back IS fighters and prosecute them.  Mr Geens says this should happen as part of a concerted action with European partners.  He was speaking after US President Trump spoke of the need to take back and prosecute European jihadi fighters and his intention of releasing 800 IS fighters.

US President Trump has posted several tweets on the microblogging website Twitter in which he speaks of 800 jihadi fighters being held by the US in the Levant and his wish to see European nations bring back and prosecute their fighters.

Justice minister Geens expected the US request and points to the situation in Syria where most IS prisoners are being held in Kurdish camps with the support of the US.  The Kurds are now expected to come under pressure from Turkish forces when the US withdraws and the fighters will be released.  Mr Geens says the Belgian government is in constant contact with EU neighbours.  He favours an approach that involves the lowest level of security risks.

"If IS fighters are freed, we don't know what will happen.  Control is better than letting them roam free."

The minister notes there are a limited number of fighters of Belgian heritage.  He is aware of 4, but notes more and more fighters are being captured.