"European governments have taken the few fighters and families sent in their direction by the Turkish or Kurdish authorities, but they are not proactively demanding repatriation or seeking to accelerate it," said Thomas Renard, principal investigator at the Egmont Institute, an investigation . Group in Brussels
Nonprofit organizations and experts have warned that thousands of women and children remain stranded in miserable camps, who suffer and die from malnutrition, disease and, in winter, are exposed to the cold.
However, although the Turkish incursion into northern Syria may have prompted European governments to address repatriations, returns may have complicated, analysts said.
"The Kurdish forces used to be the only interlocutor for repatriation, and now we have added Turkey, and potentially another interlocutor if the Bashar al-Assad regime puts its hands on the citizens of European countries at some point," Renard said. , referring to the Syrian leader.
As Turkish forces moved to Kurdish-controlled territories in northern Syria last month, Kurdish militias reached an agreement with the Syrian government backed by Russia that allows the Assad army to regain control of the territories from North. That fueled fears among Western governments that citizens could be detained by Syrian forces and then used as currency.
The announcement that Britain would recover at least some children from Syria was well received by the defenders, although they urged the government to repatriate more. "It shows that the route remains open and repatriations are possible, despite the tense situation on the ground," said Orlaith Minogue of the charity Save the Children.
Estimates vary, but up to 60 British children are still in Syria, according to the organization.
"Three children are the tip of the iceberg," said Joanna Cook, a senior researcher member of the International Center for the Study of Radicalization at King’s College, London.