Adelaide woman identified as accused Islamic State member

Wednesday - 27/06/2018 10:26
A YOUNG nursing student has been revealed as the Adelaide woman accused of being a member of terror organisation Islamic State.

A YOUNG nursing student has been revealed as the Adelaide woman accused of being a member of terrorist organisation Islamic State after a suppression order on her identity was revoked by the Supreme Court.

Zainab Abdirahman-Khalif, 23, was charged with knowingly being a member of a terrorist organisation after search warrants were executed at a property in Adelaide’s western suburbs last year. Her identity had been subject to a non-publication order until that was lifted by a court Wednesday.

She was charged due to her online interactions with people in Kenya, who she claims are friends not connected with terrorism, but who authorities allege are IS members.

The African-born student, who is an Australian citizen, was arrested in May last year after allegedly trying to fly to Turkey on a one-way ticket.

Prosecutors allege she planned the trip after being mentored by a female IS cell in Kenya.

The prosecution also alleges Ms Abdirahman-Khalif had been repeating oaths and singing songs connected to IS in her bedroom.

Ms Abdirahman-Khalif, who faces up to 10 years in jail, pleaded not guilty to the charge in November. But the Adelaide Magistrates Court found she did have a case to answer before she was committed to the higher court.

At the time Ms Abdirahman-Khalif pleaded not guilty, her lawyer Craig Caldicott told reporters outside court that the law was against his client.

“She’s not guilty because to sing a song in your bedroom last time I checked wasn’t an offence,” he said.

“We are not disputing there may have been a prurient interest in IS, but that in itself is not an offence.

“How do they (the prosecution) say this woman is a member of IS? Being a member is a different level of involvement to having an interest.

“I have a prurient interest in the Adelaide Crows, but I’m not a member of the Adelaide Crows.”

Muslim woman Zainab Abdirahman-Khalif — who is a student in SA — is of Somali origin and moved to Australia when she was aged 14.
Muslim woman Zainab Abdirahman-Khalif — who is a student in SA — is of Somali origin and moved to Australia when she was aged 14.Source:Supplied

 

Zainab Abdirahman-Khalif, 22, has been charged with being a member of Islamic State.
Zainab Abdirahman-Khalif, 22, has been charged with being a member of Islamic State.Source:Supplied

A family friend who refused to be identified, last year told The Advertiser that Ms Abdirahman-Khalif was a “nice girl” and was surprised at allegations of terrorism.

Neighbour Michael Lovis said Ms Abdirahman-Khalif lived with her mother and two other boys.

“There are people coming in and out of the house but nothing strange,” he said. “They are a pretty quiet family.”

Court documents allege she committed the offence between May 23 2016 and May 23 2017.

SA Police Deputy Commissioner Linda Williams previously said the woman was charged with membership of IS, not with planning an attack.

“There is no known ongoing threat to the community,” she said.

She is due to stand trial in the Supreme Court in August.

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