* Muriel Degauque was born as a Catholic in Belgium in 1967 in the small suburb of Charleroi, a coal mining corner of Belgium known as the black country. Both parents were from the working class in Belgium. She graduated the best local high school in the area. Muriel Degauque had fallen into the wrong crowd which circulated in the neighborhood. The Belgian Police say she became known as a drug user, though she was never arrested. In 1987 Muriel Degauque’s brother was killed in a motorcycle accident..
Muriel Degauque, disturbed from her brother death, moved out of the house and soon married a much older Turkish man, in what neighbors presumed was an arrangement to help him legalize his status in Belgium. They divorced about two years later, in 1990. In the next ten years Muriel Degauque worked at restaurants as a waitress and had several boyfriends. She eventually met an Algerian man who introduced her to Islam. She began appearing at her parents’ home wearing a head scarf..
In the late 90’s Muriel Degauque met Issam Goris, the son of a Belgian man and Moroccan woman. Issam Goris was already known to Belgian Police as a radical Islamist. They married in 2000. In late 2000 Muriel Degauque moved with her second husband to Morocco, where she learned Arabic and studied the Koran. They returned to Belgium in late 2002..
When Muriel Degauque returned, she wore not only a head scarf but the full length robe worn by Muslim women of North Africa. The couple rented a one-bedroom apartment a few blocks from Issam Goris’s mother. Muriel Degauque began to demand her parents to follow Islamic customs when she and her husband visited. The relations between Muriel Degauque and her parents became very distant. On 08/2005 Muriel Degauque called her parents, for the last time, from Syria, while the parents did not even know that she had left the country. She told her mother that she would be gone more than a year..
On 11/09/2005 Muriel Degauque committed a suicide against USA forces in Baquba, Iraq, wounding (only) one American soldier. American soldiers recovered her passport and other papers. That same day, the Americans found Issam Goris, who was also wrapped in explosives, apparently about to carry out an attack. They shot him dead before he could detonate his charges. Muriel Degauque believed to be the first European Muslim woman to stage a suicide attack.
Issam Goris was an activist in a recruiting group that recruited volunteers for Abu Musab al Zarqawi in Iraq. The police had been monitoring the group for months when they intercepted phone calls, in late 2005, from Issam Goris in Iraq indicating that he and his wife were already there.
.The Belgian intelligence notified the United States and the Iraqi government that a Belgian couple was in the country with intent to carry out attacks.
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