BAGHDAD -- About 300 wives and children of 'Islamic State' (IS) militants captured in Mosul have been transferred from northern Iraq to Baghdad "for expulsion to their home countries", an Iraqi official told AFP Monday (November 20).
Troops recaptured Iraq's second city, Mosul, in July from IS. They transferred the families of IS militants to the Tel Keif detention centre north of Mosul.
In mid-September, a senior security official said when the families arrived in Tel Keif that they comprised 509 women and 813 children from 13 different countries in Europe, Asia and America. That total included about 10 individuals from Tajikistan.
The recent transfer "is the second wave of expulsions, and two or three more will follow," said Nureddin Qablan, deputy head of the Nineveh provincial council.
"A total of more than 1,200 members of jihadists' families will be transferred" from Tel Keif to a similar facility in the capital, he said.
According to the Norwegian Refugee Council NGO, which is seeking access to the detainees for humanitarian purposes, the families are mainly from Turkey, Azerbaijan, Russia and Tajikistan.
With the 'Islamic State' on the verge of defeat, Kazakhstanis who joined the group are likely to begin returning home, where they will face anti-terrorism measures.
Popular support in Central Asia for Islamist insurgencies in the Middle East and beyond is waning.