Spanish girl, 14, held on suspicion of trying to join Isis

August 4, 2014

Spanish police have detained a 14-year-old girl and a 19-year-old woman suspected of trying to join Islamist extremists fighting in Iraq and Syria.

Security forces stopped the teenagers on Saturday as they tried to enter Morocco allegedly to join Islamic State (Isis), whose fighters have seized swaths of Iraq and Syria, the government said.

“The detention of two women recruited for jihad is a remarkable and unprecedented event in Spain,” the interior ministry said.

They were detained at the Beni Enzar border crossing in Melilla, one of two tiny Spanish territories on the north African coast, which share a border with Morocco.

“The two women detained in this police operation are a clear example of this,” the interior ministry said. “Their radicalisation, recruitment and later dispatch as combatants were perfectly planned and organised by a network that operates across north Africa and has as its main goal getting the maximum number of unquestioning combatants.”