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Moscow Student Charged With Trying to Join Islamic State to Remain in Custody

Varvara Karaulova

The Moscow City Court has upheld the arrest extension for Varvara Karaulova, the Moscow State University student detained last year for alleged attempts to join the Islamic State terrorist organization.

Lawyers for Karaulova, who has changed her name to Alexandra Ivanova, insisted that their client be released from detention, but the court rejected the appeal, the RBC newspaper reported Tuesday.

The Moscow State University student had taken an interest in Arabic culture and Islam. Following her disappearance in May 2015, her parents discovered that she had an online relationship with a recruiter for the Islamic State.

Karaulova was detained on the Turkish-Syrian border in October 2015 and brought back to Moscow.

In February, Karaulova's defense sent a complaint to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) over on the violation of her rights to liberty, security of person and the fairness of the proceedings, RBC reported.

Earlier this month, her lawyer announced that Karaulova was declared sane following a psychiatric examination.

The Islamic State is a terrorist organization banned in Russia.

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