Laois man on his way home from war zone

Freedom

Laois man on his way home from war zone

The Ballylinan native released after a week of captivity in Iraq is said to be on his way home toLaois.

Laois TD and Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan confirmed that Joshua Molloy had been released after being taken captive by Kurds after crossing the border from Syria.

“I welcome Joshua’s release and I am pleased that he is now on his way home to join his family in Ireland.

“I would like to thank all those who helped to make this early release happen. My department will continue to provide consular assistance in this case,” he said.

Mr Molloy was captured with two other British nationals. He travelled to Syria to fight against ISIS.

The former British soldier is a son of Declan and Ann Marie Farrell-Molloy who live in Ballylinan.

The young man's father declined to comment to the Leinster Express for privacy reasons but he told other media outlets he found out on Saturday night his son would be freed during a phone call with Mr Flanagan.

“We are all delighted here. We are jumping with joy to know that he is out,” he said.

“You know that Christmas morning feeling, it’s a bit like that, when you find your most sought-after present under the tree, the dream present. That’s how we feel.”

He spoke to his son this morning via Facebook and reported that he was “fine” - but felt he would need some time to himself after his ordeal.

Mr Molloy got a second-hand account of his son’s condition and life in the jail after a freelance reporter managed to visit him in the hours before the releases were secured.

“It must have been an awful place to be,” he said.

Mr Molloy also paid tribute to the work of diplomatic chiefs in London and Dublin.

It is not known when he will arrive back in Ireland.