Russian Student Detained trying to Enter Syria
Turkish authorities have detained a female Russian student as she attempted to cross into war-torn Syria, Russian authorities said June 5.
Moscow State University student Varvara Karaulova, 19, was found in the Turkish border town of Kilis after she vanished from the Russian capital, the interior ministry said in a statement.
The cultural studies major who had apparently developed an interest in Islam and Arabic went missing on 27 May after skipping lectures at the prestigious university and flying to Istanbul, local media has reported, sparking speculation she wanted to link up with jihadists from the Islamic State or Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
An Interior Ministry statement said Friday that 19-year-old Varvara Karaulova was detained in Kilis while trying to cross the border and was being held by Turkish immigration authorities. It was not clear whether she would face charges there.
Russian media reports said Karaulova, a student at prestigious Moscow State University, went missing in late May. It was determined that she had flown to Turkey and her cellphone was traced to the border area.
The reports said Karaulova had adopted Islam and sometimes wore a hijab. Her father was quoted as saying he feared she had become radicalized.