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Jeremy Corbyn says Isis leader al-Baghdadi 'should have been captured to face trial'

13 November 2019, 14:02 | Updated: 13 November 2019, 17:37

By Megan White

Jeremy Corbyn has said Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi should have been “arrested and put on trial” after the death of the ISIS leader during a US-led military operation in Syria.

Speaking to LBC News, Mr Corbyn was responding to a question about the killing of Osama bin Laden by US forces in 2011. The Labour leader said arresting al-Baghdadi “surely would have been the right thing to do.”

Mr Corbyn said the terror leaders should have instead been put through the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

Jeremy Corbyn speaks about the US killing of al-Baghdadi
Jeremy Corbyn speaks about the US killing of al-Baghdadi. Picture: LBC News
ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi died in a US-led military operation in Syria
ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi died in a US-led military operation in Syria. Picture: PA

Mr Corbyn told LBC News: “If we preach international law and international legal process through the International Court of Justice in The Hague, then we should carry it out.

“If it’s possible to arrest somebody and put them on trial, then that is what should have been done, and that is what I said about the death in 2011 and it will continue to be my principle.

“If we believe, as we do, in international law and justice, and the power of the International Court of Justice, then we should do everything we can to bring people where they deserve to go on trial to be put on trial, as was Milošević.”

Donald Trump claimed a major US victory after al-Baghdadi died in an operation in Syria.

Mr Trump said he was killed in an ‘impeccable’ operation that took around two hours at a compound in Idlib province in October.

“US special operations forces executed a dangerous and daring night-time raid in north-west Syria and accomplished their mission in grand style,” he said.

When further questioned on the issue, Mr Corbyn added: “Him being removed from the scene is a very good thing.

“If it would have been possible to arrest him, I don’t know the details of the circumstances of the time – I’ve only seen various statements put out by the US about it – but surely that would have been the right thing to do.

“If we’re going to live in a world of peace and justice we should practice it as well.”

Mr Trump said Baghdadi detonated a suicide vest and killed himself and three of his children.

“He died like a dog, he died like a coward. The world is now a much safer place,” he said.

Security Minister Brandon Lewis said Mr Corbyn's comments showed his flawed judgement and inability to stand up to terrorists.

Mr Lewis said: "Corbyn’s comments are yet more proof of his flawed judgement and inability to stand up to people who reject our values.

"Every time he is given the opportunity to take the side of this country's enemies he does so.

“In one month, Britain could wake up to find him standing on the steps of Downing Street as our Prime Minister.

“Voters at the election next month face a crucial choice between a Conservative majority government that will keep our country safe or a chaotic coalition led by Jeremy Corbyn which would be a disaster for national security."

Mr Corbyn's comments echo similar ones he made about the 2011 killing of Al Qaida leader Osama Bin Laden.

He came under fire in 2015 after saying he thought it was a "tragedy" Bin Laden was killed by US forces as he thought he should have been captured and put on trial.

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