Three young girls in Denver tried to join Islamic State militants in Syria after steeling their parents’ money and flying to Germany. They were nabbed at the Frankfurt, Germany airport by the FBI.
The suburban Denver women, two sisters ages 17 and 15, as well as a 16-year old friend, skipped school Friday and were reported missing after none of them returned home. They were subsequently apprehended in Germany and returned to their families in Colorado, according to FBI spokesperson Suzie Payne.
Another United States official said the girls were headed for Turkey en route to Syria, where they would join the Islamic militia, and that investigators were reviewing the girls’ laptops among other evidence.
Yet another U.S. official called the situation “concerning” to the country, as well as the Colorado community. “The evidence gathered so far made it clear that the girls were headed to Syria,” the official said. He added that investigators were still determining who they had as a contact in Syria or any of the outlying countries. Investigators are also trying to figure out if there were other peers of these three girls who thought the same way.
The three girls were detained in the Frankfurt airport before being returned to the States. They told the authorities they were visiting Germany to see relatives but would not elaborate further. The father of the sisters realized something was wrong with the situation when he noticed the daughters had fled with $ 2,000 and passports.
The three girls had shown no signs that they intended to travel to Syria prior to the incident. However, one month ago, 19-year old Shannon Conley, a resident of Arvada, Colorado, was charged with conspiring to help militants in Syria.
While officials are investigating the incident, they are also working to understand why these young girls have a desire to travel to Syria and join ISIS.
[photo credit: terratrekking]