Texas synagogue standoff

UK Police Detain 2 Men for Questioning Over Texas Synagogue Hostage-Taking

Two British teenagers were also brought in for questioning as part of the investigation on Sunday and later released without charge

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British police say they have arrested two people in connection with the hostage-taking at a North Texas synagogue last weekend.

Counter Terrorism Police North West said one man was arrested Thursday in Birmingham, central England, and another in the city of Manchester. They were being held for questioning and have not yet been charged.

Police did not disclose details about the two people detained Thursday. British police do not release names and details of detainees until they are charged.

The force said it was continuing to support U.S. authorities with their investigation into Saturday’s hostage incident. Malik Faisal Akram, a 44-year-old British citizen, took four people hostage at a Texas synagogue in a 10-hour standoff that ended in his death.

Two British teenagers were arrested as part of the investigation on Sunday and later released without charge. Their identities were not released, but a senior law enforcement official told NBC News the teens are Akram's sons.

Akram was from Blackburn, an industrial city in northwest England. His family said he had been “suffering from mental health issues.”

Akram entered the United States on a tourist visa about two weeks earlier and spent time in Dallas-area homeless shelters before the attack at Congregation Beth Israel, in the suburb of Colleyville.

The FBI has called the incident “a terrorism-related matter” targeting the Jewish community.

British media, including the Guardian and the BBC, have reported that Akram was investigated by the domestic intelligence service MI5 as a possible “terrorist threat” in 2020, but authorities concluded he posed no danger, and the investigation was closed.

The White House said Tuesday that Akram had been checked against U.S. law enforcement databases before entering the country but raised no red flags.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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