The jihadi bride arrived in Dublin at approximately 10.15am this morning with her two-year-old daughter. Ms Smith, 38, was detained by Irish police officers on arrival while her daughter was taken care of by her family in Ireland. The former Irish Defence Forces member fled to Syria in 2015 to join the Islamic State and had been living in a Syrian refugee camp until she fell into Turkish hands.
She was was deported from Turkey and placed on the first scheduled Turkish Airlines flight to Ireland, which landed in Dublin this morning.
The ISIS bride was not in custody for the four-and-a-half-hour flight but Gardai, the Irish police force, were waiting at Dublin airport for the plane’s arrival.
Pictures show Ms Smith covered in a pink blanket as she was taken from the plane.
Members of the Irish military and its special operations force, the Army Ranger Wing, are assisted with the operation.
In a statement this morning, Gardai said: “Today, Sunday 1st December 2019, at Dublin Airport, An Garda Síochána has arrested an Irish citizen (38 year old female) on suspicion of terrorist offences following her deportation from Turkey.
“She is currently being detained at a South Dublin Garda station under the provisions of Section 30 of the Offences against the State Act, 1939 as amended.
“A child, also an Irish Citizen, was in the company of the female and is now being cared for by relatives.”
Ms Smith can be questioned for a maximum of three days.
Irish prime minister Leo Varadkar has described the situation as “tricky” but added Ireland could not expect authorities in Turkey to hold her permanently.
He said: “It is a tricky situation. And ultimately the child is an Irish citizen and deserves to be protected in my view. Ultimately we seek to protect our citizens.
“Obviously as regards to Lisa Smith, that’s a slightly different situation. But she is our citizen.
“And it wouldn’t be fair to expect the Turkish authorities to hold her indefinitely.”
Earlier this year Ms Smith said she wanted to return to Ireland and described travelling to Syria as her “biggest mistake”.
Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan described the case as “sensitive” and said a multi-agency network is in place.
He said: “This is a sensitive case and I want to reassure people that all relevant State agencies are closely involved.
“A multi-agency network is in place here comprising agency personnel who engage on an ongoing basis with international colleagues regarding emerging practice in relation to the complex issue of radicalisation.
“This network will coordinate engagement on a case by case basis as and when appropriate.”