Russian interior ministry said Friday that a student, who went missing last week, was found in Turkey and is believed to have been hired by the Islamic State group. Varvara Karaulova was detained by Turkish authorities in the city of Killis in south-central Turkey while trying to enter Syria.
It was not clear if the 19-year-old would face any charges, but a report by Sputnik News, cited her father as saying that she will be deported to Istanbul over the weekend. Karaulova was a student at the Moscow State University and had been missing since late May. According to a report by the Associated Press, Karaulova had adopted Islam as her religion and was often seen wearing a hijab, the religious veil. Her father, who was reportedly informed about her by the Russian consulate, said Friday that he was worried that his daughter may have been radicalized.
Elena Alekseeva, a spokeswoman for the Russian interior ministry, confirmed that the girl was found and thanked the Interpol for its assistance and the Turkish authorities for coordinating with Russia, Sputnik News reported. According to a report by the United Nations in April, over 25,000 fighters from 100 countries had left their homes to join radical Islamic groups like al Qaeda and ISIS. The number of foreigners, fighting along with terror cells, jumped 71 percent between mid-March 2014 and March 2015.
The Islamic State group's influence has also been increasing in Russia, where the police said last month that the former captain of a professional Kazakh football team had left the country to join the militant group in Syria. According to a March news report, ISIS was calling on Russian-speaking women to join the group, reasoning that they were being oppressed by the non-Muslim governments. In February, a man from Tajikistan was held for creating a promotional website for the extremist group.