February 11, 2020 / 10:38 AM / 17 days ago

Indonesia will not take back nationals who joined Islamic State - minister

BOGOR, Indonesia (Reuters) - Indonesia has decided not to take back nearly 700 of its nationals who left home to join Islamic State in Syria and other countries, the chief security minister said on Tuesday.

The minister, Mahfud MD, said the government needed to ensure the security of 267 million Indonesian citizens by keeping the fighters out of the country.

The minister said, however, authorities would try to get more accurate data on the Indonesians who had joined Islamic State and might take back children aged 10 and younger, although this would be reviewed on a “case by case” basis.

Reporting by Maikel Jefriando; Writing by Fransiska Nangoy; Editing by Andrew Heavens

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