BRITISH diplomats are moving in to help an Irishman and two British citizens who are being held in an Iraqi prison.
Joshua Molloy, a 24-year-old former British Army soldier from Co. Laois, was arrested on Friday (April 15) while crossing the Syrian-Iraqi border and is being held in prison.
Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs said it is working “actively” on the case.
It is reported that Mr Molloy served in the Royal Irish Regiment for four years before joining Kurdish resistance fighters the Kurdish protection force YPG – an army of between 25,000 and 50,000 resisting ISIS.
His arrest came alongside two British citizens, also believed to be fighting with Kurdish forces.
Ireland has no diplomatic presence in Iraq and it is understood that Britain’s vice-consul has attempted to gain access to the three men for an update on their condition.
The YPG has actively been recruiting foreign fighters online, in an effort to resist the growing Islamic State forces in the Middle East.
Mr Molloy grew up in Ballylinan, a small village on the Laois-Kildare border, and joined the British Army’s Royal Irish Regiment after leaving Ardscoil na Tríonóide, a secondary school in nearby Athy.
It is not clear when he travelled to Syria but it appears he was crossing the Syrian border and making his way home with former soldier Joe Ackerman and IT worker Jac Holmes when the three men were arrested.
British-based Kurdish rights activist Mark Campbell said that all three were in good health but that conditions are poor; The Irish Times reports.