U.S.-backed force won't release jihadists, but warns they could escape

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BEIRUT (Reuters) - Kurdish-led authorities in north Syria said on Monday they would not free foreign Islamic State detainees but countries must take responsibility for them, after U.S. President Donald Trump said jihadists would be freed unless Europe takes them back.

Abdulkarim Omar, co-chair of foreign relations in the Kurdish-led region, said around 800 foreign fighters were being held in prisons, along with around 700 wives and 1,500 children in camps for the displaced. Dozens more detainees and relatives were arriving by the day.

He described the detainees as a "time bomb", saying fighters could escape if the Kurdish-led autonomous area were attacked.

(Reporting by Ellen Francis; Editing by Tom Perry and Peter Graff)

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