Turkey detains 'Syria-bound' British woman: official

17th March 2015, Comments 0 comments

The Turkish authorities have detained a British woman in the capital Ankara on suspicion of planning to go to Syria to join jihadist fighters, a government official said on Tuesday.

The detention of the woman, aged 21, comes after Turkey last week arrested three British male teenagers suspected of trying to travel to Syria.

"A British woman was arrested last night (Monday) at the bus station in Ankara," the official told AFP, asking not to be named.

The official said that the arrest was not the result of intelligence sharing by the British authorities.

"It is a success of the Ankara police," said the official.

Another Turkish official gave her age as 21 and said she was being held by Ankara police.

In London, a Foreign Office spokesperson said: "We can confirm the detention of a British national in Ankara and are providing consular assistance."

The detention comes days after Turkey arrested an intelligence agent working as a spy for an unidentified country in the US-led coalition.

The man, a Syrian national, is suspected of helping three British schoolgirls cross into Syria to join the Islamic State (IS) group earlier this year.

Turkey has in the last weeks stepped up efforts to refute Western criticism that it is not doing enough to halt the flow of extremists to Syria across its borders.

The three British male teenagers suspected of trying to travel to Syria were deported to Britain and released on bail late Sunday after being questioned for 24 hours on suspicion of preparing acts of terrorism.

© 2015 AFP

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