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Dublin: 1 °C Monday 18 November, 2019

Gardaí confirm Irish woman who'd become radicalised is ex-Defence Forces member

It emerged last night that the former Defence Forces member had been detained in northern Syria.

Image: Sasko Lazarov/

AN IRISH WOMAN who has been detained in Syria for alleged links to the Islamic State terror group became radicalised three or four years ago and is a former member of the Defence Forces, gardaí have confirmed.

Last night, it emerged that the woman was held in northern Syria early this week and the Irish government has been contacted and is aware of the case.

So far, there has been no official confirmation of her identity. 

Security sources have told that the woman left the Defence Forces in 2011 and married a Muslim man. She had earlier converted to Islam. It is believed she left for Syria in 2015 after her initial marriage broke down. 

It is believed she is currently being detained by the US armed forces based in northern Syria.

In a statement to, a garda spokesperson said: “An Garda Síochána are aware of an Irish woman who left Ireland 3 or 4 years ago having become radicalised. She was previously a member of the Irish Defence Forces.”

The spokesperson added that gardaí were not currently aware of anyone in custody. 

A spokesperson for Government said: “The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is aware of reports of an Irish citizen detained in northern Syria.

“Appropriate consular assistance is provided to all Irish citizens where it is possible to do so.” has asked the US Army for comment.

With reporting from Garreth MacNamee

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Sean Murray

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