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Dublin: 3°C Friday 22 January 2021
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Three Irish fighters have been killed in Middle East conflicts since 2010

It’s estimated that between 25 and 30 Irish people have traveled to the area where Islamic State is active.

Fighting between US forces and Islamic State at the Turkey-Syria border on Monday.
Fighting between US forces and Islamic State at the Turkey-Syria border on Monday.
Image: AP/Press Association Images

MINISTER FOR JUSTICE Frances Fitzgerald has confirmed that three Irish citizens have been killed in Arab Spring or other Middle East conflicts in the last four years.

She confirmed the number in response to parliamentary question from a TD who was enquiring about measures being taken to prevent citizens from joining the Islamic State campaign in Syria and Iraq.

It’s estimated that between 25 and 30 Irish people traveled to the area where ISIS is active.

And Fitzgerald notes that…

“..within that number are individuals who would have traveled to Libya and other Arab States to take part in the popular uprisings known as the Arab Spring which began in December 2010.

Some of these individuals are known to have returned and three have died in the conflicts.

A spokesperson said the Department wasn’t in a position to give any more detail on the circumstances of their deaths.

Measures

Continuing her answer, the Minister said An Garda Síochána “monitors the movements of those suspected of involvement in extremist behaviour, and in line with best practice internationally has engaged with returnees from the conflict areas”.

“In tandem with that, the Gardaí operate a progressive community relations programme through its Racial Inter-Cultural and Diversity Office.

She also notes…

“It is of course essential that at times like this entire communities do not get stigmatised because of the actions of a few.

It has to be recognised that the vast majority of people in our communities wish only to go about their daily lives in peace.

The ’25 to 30′ figure is based on a study conducted by CNN based on research from national governments, the Pew Research Center and other sources.

First published 6.30am

Read: US warns that air strikes alone will not stop advancement of Islamic State

Read: Now IS has advanced to the Turkish border – and planted its flag there

About the author:

Daragh Brophy

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