A girl believed to be Linda Wenzel has been captured in Mosul, Iraq. Picture: Twitter
A girl believed to be Linda Wenzel has been captured in Mosul, Iraq. Picture: Twitter

German schoolgirl turned ISIS sniper found in warzone

A 16-year-old German schoolgirl who ran away from home to join Islamic State before being captured in the ruins of Mosul - was reportedly a sniper for the terror group.

Linda Wenzel was tracked down by Iraqi troops along with four other German women hiding in a tunnel, in the old part of the Iraqi city during a sweep, The Sun reported.

Pictures shared on social media show the girl being escorted by Iraqi security forces after they discovered her alive under rubble.

She looks pale, afraid and covered in dust, unveiled but wearing a colourful scarf around her neck.

She was initially mistaken for a kidnapped Yazidi girl because of her lack of Arabic.

Reports from the battlefront claim Iraqi forces state she was a sharpshooter for her Islamic State warlords, claims The Telegraph.

Wenzel from the town of Pulsnitz near Dresden fled a year ago after flying from Frankfurt to Turkey before making her way to Syria.

She then quickly fell in with an Islamic State offshoot group before being smuggled into Iraq.

Radicalised in Germany, she changed her name to Mariam and sometimes posted photos of herself on her Facebook page wearing a headscarf.

Friends of the teen told police she had suddenly started learning Arabic, taking the Koran to school, wearing conservative clothing and becoming fascinated with Islam before she disappeared.

It was also reported she may have fallen in love with a Muslim boy she met online.

Hundreds of suspected Islamic State members swept up by Iraqi forces in Mosul are being held in a cramped and stifling prison just outside the city. (AP Photo/Bram Janssen)
Hundreds of suspected Islamic State members swept up by Iraqi forces in Mosul are being held in a cramped and stifling prison just outside the city. (AP Photo/Bram Janssen)



Authorities in Germany, who listed her as a potential terror suspect after her disappearance, confirmed they are examining the new photos to make sure it is actually her.

However, respected newspaper Die Welt, citing security sources, said the captive girl is definitely the missing schoolgirl.

She was among 20 IS followers seized after the city fell following a ten month battle which left 25,000 jihadists dead and Iraq's second largest city a sea of devastation.

She was caught in a tunnel system in Mosul with other women, some wearing suicide vests and carrying automatic weapons.

Reports said they worked for the IS police force in the city.

Also seized during military mopping-up operations last Thursday were women from Russia, Turkey, Canada and Chechnya.

"There are new findings in the criminal investigation that are being tested," said chief prosecutor Lorenz Haase.

"When she is clearly identified, the investigation will be resumed."

Wenzel was said to be unhappy at home when she turned to Islam.

She soon began engaging with IS followers in the Middle East in internet chat rooms and was under the observation of
German intelligence officials who suspected her of plotting a serious crime against the state when she fled abroad.

When her mother first noticed she was missing last year the teenager had already flown to Turkey and vanished.

Wenzel's mother said in July last year: "When she did not come back and then I found out she had never even been there, I called the police.

"In her room they found a print of a plane ticket to Istanbul under the mattress. I was shocked, my daughter has never stolen or lied about anything before.

"She got a proper brainwashing I hope we can get her back."

Last April, The Sun also revealed how using a crack all-female squad of snipers in the battle for Mosul.

Sun reporter Owen Holdaway joined an Iraqi army squad as they face the female death squad.

Commander Haydar, the head of the Iraqi Army's Emergency Response Division [ERD] sniper unit said: "I have not seen them, but we have intelligence that there is a female ISIS sniper unit."

He maintained he had seen similar outfits fighting for Islamic State throughout Iraq.

He also said many of the fighters left in the city at the time were foreigners, with most being Russian, Chechen or Afghan.

The women were deployed in some areas of western Mosul to help hold off Iraqi troops.

The deadly new all-female sniper gang reportedly killed an innocent man after he dared to accept water from US
soldiers.

Security services estimate that hundreds of Western men and women have left home to join Islamic State since the group overran large parts of Iraq and Syria in June 2014.

- with news.com.au

News Corp Australia


Search for missing Queensland swimmer suspended

Search for missing Queensland swimmer suspended

Emergency services have not been able to find the missing swimmer

Coffs Tri almost at capacity

Coffs Tri almost at capacity

Flood of last minute entries expected over the next few days.

Assorted sporting stars swing by Bonville Golf Resort

Assorted sporting stars swing by Bonville Golf Resort

Deputy Premier tees off with stars on eve of big Bonville event

Local Partners