Paris attacks: Police hunt kosher grocery store gunman's girlfriend Hayat Boumeddiene as pictures of her firing crossbows emerge

The 26-year-old reportedly attended a jihadist training camp

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The Independent Online

Police are still hunting the girlfriend of Amedy Coulibaly after the gunman was killed during the violent end of the siege of a Jewish grocery shop in Paris, in which he killed four hostages.

The whereabouts of Hayat Boumeddiene are unknown after police named her as an "armed and dangerous" suspect. She was reported to be Coulibaly's accomplice during the shooting of a female police officer on Thursday.

There are conflicting reports in French media that Boumeddiene may have fled to Syria via Turkey even before the attacks took place. She had a ticket to Istanbul for 2 January and was due to arrive in Syria on Thursday, Le Monde reports.

A Turkish intelligence offical has now come forward to say that he believes Boumeddiene has travelled to Syria, saying she flew to Istanbul on 2 January.

The official said the woman resembled a widely distributed photo of the woman, Hayat Boumeddiene. Turkish authorities believe she travelled to the Turkish city of Sanliurfa near the Syrian border on 4 January. The official said "she then disappeared."

Boumeddiene is believed to be of Algerian descent but changed her name to make it appear more French and reportedly worked as a cashier before being radicalised.

The 26-year-old is believed to have been in a relationship with Amedy Coulibaly since 2010

She and Coulibaly are believed to have married in a religious ceremony in 2009, which is not recognised in French law.

The 26-year-old reportedly lived in his apartment while he was in prison for his part in a plot to help Paris metro bomber Smain Ait Ali Belkacem escape.

During that time, he is believed to have met Cherif Kouachi. Both men and possibly Boumeddiene were avid followers of extremist Djamel Beghal.

According to Le Monde, Boumeddiene said she and Coulibaly practised firing crossbows together in the countryside while on holiday visiting Beghal, who claims to have met Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan to plan a suicide bombing.

Hayat Boumeddiene with Amedy Coulibaly in Cantal, France, in 2010.She claimed they had crossbow training

The newspaper published a series of 2010 pictures showing her pointing the weapon at a camera while wearing a full-face veil, which is banned in France.

Beghal, a convicted terrorist who was once based at London’s Finsbury Park mosque, was jailed for plotting to bomb the American embassy in Paris and mentored Coulibaly and Cherif Kouachi, according to Le Monde.

Djamel Beghal is said to have had huge influence on a close-knit group of disaffected young Muslims

He allegedly set up a suspected jihadist training camp in Cantal, a mountainous area of central France, where he was visited by Boumeddiene, Coulibaly and others.

Boumeddiene was previously interviewed by French anti-terror police in 2010, it was reported, but it was unclear whether any action was taken against her.

During interrogation, she reportedly said she was inspired by her boyfriend and radicals she lived with to "read a lot of books on religion".

Hayat Boumeddiene in 2010 while she claimed to have crossbow training with Amedy Coulibaly

"When I saw the massacre of the innocents in Palestine, in Iraq, in Chechnya, in Afghanistan or anywhere the Americans sent their bombers, all that… well, who are the terrorists?" she said, according to the Daily Mail.

After her lover's release from prison, they couple lived in the southern Paris suburb of Bagneux, where neighbours knew them as quiet, religious and "normal".

They had exchanged about 500 phone calls with the companion of one of the Kouachi brothers during 2014, it has emerged.

The attack on the supermarket was carefully co-ordinated with the Charlie Hebdo massacre and the suspects' subsequent escape, police said.