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Migration and Home Affairs

Manual ‘Responses to returnees: Foreign terrorist fighters and their families’, July 2017

This manual outlines responses to foreign terrorist fighters (FTFs) and their families, returning or planning to return to their home countries within the European Union, from terrorist conflict zones such as Syria and Iraq. When the term ‘returnees’ is used in this manual, it refers to FTFs and their families (women and children).

The responses are presented from a practitioner’s perspective, and should be considered as part of the broader set of responses to returning foreign terrorist fighters (including measures with a security focus such as criminal justice or administrative measures).

When dealing with returning FTFs and their families, safeguarding security is a prerequisite. The different proposed interventions therefore include a clear security aspect (e.g. as part of multi-agency teams). Risk assessments are the appropriate tool to appraise security risks and develop the most appropriate mitigating measures. Furthermore, close cooperation between grass root practitioners and the relevant public actors, including law enforcement, should ensure that security risks are communicated through the appropriate channels.

This manual sets out general approaches to be adapted to the relevant specific situation in individual EU Member States while taking into account that competences and structures within national, regional and local governments differ. Read more


Issue Paper (also available in Albanian | Bulgarian | Czech | Danish | Estonian | German | Greek | Finnish | French | Hungarian | Italian | Latvian | Lithuanian | Macedonian | Dutch | Polish | Portuguese | Romanian | Serbian | Spanish | Slovak | Slovenian)