A Japanese woman who went missing in Syria with her French husband in November had been urged by the Foreign Ministry not to visit to areas controlled by the Islamic State group.
The ministry in October asked the woman not to travel to the war-torn country, much of which is controlled by Islamic State jihadis, according to a government document issued in reply to a question from Lower House member Kensuke Onishi of the Democratic Party of Japan, and approved Friday by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Cabinet.
The government said it does not know whether the woman is currently in Islamic State-held territory. The woman and her husband, who is of Algerian descent, are both Muslims in their 20s and reportedly said they want to engage in humanitarian activities.
The couple departed from Narita airport bound for Turkey, which borders Syria, in early November.
In a separate reply to criticism of Abe’s speech in January pledging $200 million in nonmilitary aid to “countries contending with the Islamic State group,” the government said it was “natural that ISIL, which is threatening the entire international community, would be mentioned.” ISIL is an acronym referring to the Islamic State group.
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