An Australian ISIS bride who left Melbourne to fight for the terrorist organisation is holed up in a Turkish prison after fleeing a Syrian refugee camp with her two young children.
Zehra Duman, 26, is in a Şanlıurfa jail on the Turkish border after fleeing the Al-Hol camp in north-eastern Syria.
Her four-year-old son Jarrad and one-year-old daughter Layla have been held at a nearby child protection centre since July 17, according to documents seen by SBS News.
Her lawyer confirmed to SBS she had fled to Turkey, where she’s currently imprisoned and under investigatation from authorities.
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Australia’s first Islamic State bride Zehra Duman (pictured) is holed up in a Turkish prison
Daily Mail Australia has contacted the Department of Home Affairs and the Turkish Embassy for further comment.
A department spokesperson told SBS it couldn’t comment as the matter was before the courts.
Ms Duman, then 19 became Australia’s first ISIS bride in 2014 when she fled to Syria to join the terrorist group and marry Mahmoud Abullatif, a former Melbourne party boy-turned Muslim extremist who was killed in airstrike just five weeks after their wedding.
Ms Duman became a key ISIS recruiter on social media, posing with machine guns and on the bonnets of luxury cars stolen by the terrorists as she urged other Westerners to leave civilisation and join the Islamic regime.
She remarried and had a son with her second husband and followed by a daughter with a third. Both men are also now dead.
Zehra Duman (right) pictured as a teen with her mother in Melbourne before fleeing to Syria
She had hoped one day to return to Australia with her children and appealed to the High Court earlier this year after her Australian citizenship was stripped by the federal government last July.
‘Forget me, I just want my kids to see my family, to see hospitals, medication, psychologists, have a normal childhood,’ she told AAP last year.
‘You know what my son says when [my daughter] is sleeping, look Mummy [she’s] dead. This is messed up, he’s three years old, how can he know what death is?’
She also reportedly told an American humanitarian worker in a video obtained by the ABC last year that she was desperate to come home.
‘I want to go back to my country,’ the woman believed to be Ms Duman said.
‘I think everybody’s asking for that because I’m an Australian citizen.’
‘My kids have a right to be treated like normal kids.
‘I understand the anger that they have towards a lot of us here, but the kids don’t need to suffer.’
Ms Duman’s first husband Mahmoud Abdullatif (pictured) was killed shortly after they married
In an interview (pictured) with an American humanitarian worker, a woman who refused to confirm her identity but is believed to be Duman said: ‘I want to go back to my country’
At least 65 Australian women and children are among more than 70,000 refugees living in squalid conditions at the Al-Hol, or al-Hawl, camp for those displaced from the former IS territory in north-eastern Syria near the Iraq border.
Kamalle Dabboussy, a Sydney-based a representative for Australian families in Al-Hol believes Ms Duman must have been desperate to leave the refugee camp
He expressed concerns for the safety of Ms Duman’s children.
‘I’m concerned about the physical and emotional wellbeing of the children who I understand may be entitled to Australian citizenship,’ Mr Dabboussy told SBS.
‘The sooner the Australian government can make the other children in north-east Syria safe the better.’
Zehra Duman left Melbourne aged 19 to join the terror group in 2014. She was recently believed to be in a Syrian refugee camp, desperate to come home. Pictured: the woman thought to be Duman alongside aid workers
Ms Duman’s mother Ozlem Coskun begged the Australian government to bring her daughter and two grandchildren home in a rare interview with SBS Dateline 12 months ago.
She said she had spent the last three years trying to rescue her daughter and described the conditions at Al-Hol as dangerous.
‘She could be murdered there tomorrow,’ Ms Coskun said.
‘It’s disturbing to think my child is living in a tent with two babies.’
She added Zehra described her behavour of fleeing to Syria to join ISIS as a ‘dumb mistake.
‘We all make mistakes and she’s sorry for what she’s done,’ Ms Coskun said.
‘She should be able to come back home.’