Monday, May 23, 2022

Texas synagogue hostage-taker was a British citizen; two arrested in England

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US authorities say Malik Faisal Akram, the gunman who held four people hostage at a synagogue in Dallas, was a UK citizen.

The FBI did not say how or when Malik Faisal Akram, a 44 year-old man from the town of Blackburn in the north of England had entered the United States.

Meanwhile police in the UK say they’ve detained two teenagers for questioning in the investigation.

Akram was killed on Saturday night, when federal agents stormed the temple ending a daylong siege.

However, it’s unclear if he took his own life or was slain in the raid.

US President Joe Biden denounced the incident as an act of terror:

“This was an act of terror. This was an act of terror. And not only was it related to someone who had been arrested, I might add, 15 years ago, been in jail for ten years. I wanted to make sure we got the word out to synagogues and places of worship that we’re not going to tolerate this.”

During negotiations, Akram was reported to have demanded the release of a Pakistani-born scientist serving a federal prison sentence in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

His brother Gulbar later posted on Facebook that the suspect suffered from mental illness.

And that the family had spent all night helping police negotiate with him.

He added that the family’s priority is to have Akram’s body returned to the UK for his “funeral prayers” even though they have been told that “it could take weeks”.

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