Irish Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Leo Varadkar has said Ireland will take back extremists who have traveled abroad to fight with Islamic terrorist groups.
The announcement comes just days after the UK moved to revoke the citizenship of “ISIL bride” Shamima Begum, who left London to join ISIL (also known as ISIS) in Syria but now wants to return home.
Read More: Irish-citizen ISIS terrorist captured by Kurdish forces in Syria
While indicating each case would have to be considered on its own merits, Varadkar said: “I’d be very loathe to revoke anyone's citizenship, provided they are a citizen by right or acquired their citizenship lawfully or appropriately."
"I think its bad practice to revoke someone's citizenship and render them stateless and leave them to be someone else's problem," he said.
He said there may be "as few as one" jihadi who has left Ireland and would be in a position to return.
Read More: Irish passport holder in Waterford admits to funding Islamic State terrorists
"We'll have to consider whether those people legitimately acquired their citizenship," Varadkar said.
An estimated half-dozen Irish passport holders are believed to be still operating on behalf of the Islamic State in Syria, according to the Irish Independent.
Senior Gardaí (Irish Police) security and intelligence officers reckon that many of the 30 suspects, who left Ireland to join foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq, are now dead.
Others are missing and some may have headed to other "theatres of war" such as in the Philippines, the Horn of Africa and North Africa.
Read More: Irish-Algerian jihadist sentenced to 15 years in US prison on terror charges
Last December, Alexandr Ruzmatovich Bekmirzaev, who held an Irish passport and lived in Ireland for 13 years up to 2013, was captured by Kurdish fighters in an operation against ISIL in Syria.
He was regarded by the Gardaí security section and military intelligence as a key member of a back-up logistics support cell for ISIL in Dublin,
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