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The United Nations condemns the “brutal killing” of two Egyptian girls in northeastern Syria

On Friday, the United Nations condemned the “brutal killing” of two Egyptian girls whose bodies were found in the sewers of al-Hol camp in Syria, which houses families of ISIS fighters.

In a statement, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Türk, condemned the “outrageous” and “brutal” murder of these two girls, calling on the international community and the Kurdish forces that control the area to redouble their efforts to ensure the protection of thousands of women and children who are still being held in the camps.

“The death of these two young sisters who suffered so much misery is absolutely heartbreaking,” Türk said. “The circumstances of their deaths, and the manner in which they were murdered, are beyond comprehension.”

The United Nations indicated that the bodies of the two girls, both under the age of 15, were found earlier this week in the sewers of Al-Hol camp, and they had been stabbed.

According to a report received by the United Nations Human Rights Office, they were raped a few days before their death. After being raped, the sisters, as well as their mother, were harassed by extremist women inside the camp because of the stigma attached to their exposure to sexual violence, according to the United Nations.

“These two girls were trapped in the desperate conditions of this camp through no fault of their own,” Türk added.

He continued, “This latest incident should serve as a warning to the international community to immediately return the thousands of women and children who have been in the camps to their countries of origin, some of whom have been detained for years.”

The senior UN official indicated that the Syrian Democratic Forces, which exercise effective control over al-Hol camp, must “take urgent measures to ensure the safety and well-being of the people detained in the camps.”

More than 50,000 people live in the dilapidated and overcrowded al-Hol camp in northeastern Syria, which is under Kurdish administration. These are displaced Syrians, Iraqi refugees, and more than 10,000 foreigners from about 60 countries.

Since the beginning of the year, the United Nations Human Rights Office has verified “the killing of 42 people in Al-Hol camp, who are 10 Iraqi men, 6 Syrians, 4 Iraqi women, 18 Syrian women, an Iraqi boy, an Iraqi girl and the two Egyptian girls.”

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