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US U.K. police arrest two men over Texas synagogue hostage-taking

13:05  20 january  2022
13:05  20 january  2022 Source:   nbcnews.com

Texas Synagogue Hostages Taken by Gunman During Livestream Service

  Texas Synagogue Hostages Taken by Gunman During Livestream Service The man allegedly went on several profanity-laced rants while holding the victims hostage.The hostage situation at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville began during the synagogue's live-streamed Shabbat service, according to Reuters. No injuries have been reported inside the building.

Counter-terrorism police in the U.K. arrested two men for questioning on Thursday as part of an ongoing investigation into a hostage-taking at a synagogue in Texas.

The arrests came almost a week after a British man held four people captive during an 11-hour ordeal at the synagogue in a Fort Worth suburb.

Greater Manchester Police said in a statement that the two men were arrested earlier that morning in Birmingham, around 120 miles northwest of London, and Manchester, around 86 miles further north.

The department said the two men remained in custody for questioning as of around 3 a.m. ET Thursday. They have not been charged.

Hostages safe after Texas synagogue standoff; captor dead

  Hostages safe after Texas synagogue standoff; captor dead The man took over services at a Texas synagogue where he could be heard ranting on a livestream.One hostage held Saturday at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville was released during the standoff; three others got out about 9 p.m. when an FBI SWAT team entered the building, authorities said. The hostage taker was killed and FBI Special Agent in Charge Matt DeSarno said a team would investigate “the shooting incident.

"Officers from the Counter Terrorism Policing North West continue to support U.S. authorities with their investigation into the events in Texas," the Greater Manchester Police said in a statement.

It is unclear how the two men could be connected to Saturday's standoff between authorities and Malik Faisal Akram, 44, at Congregation Beth Israel, a Reform synagogue in the city of Colleyville. The incident culminated in the hostages escaping unharmed before Akram, who is from Lancashire in northwest England, was killed by federal agents.

The FBI has said that Akram is believed to have acted alone.

Image: A handout photo of Malik Faisal Akram taken in Dallas, Texas on January 2, 2022 (OurCalling LLC / via Reuters) © OurCalling LLC Image: A handout photo of Malik Faisal Akram taken in Dallas, Texas on January 2, 2022 (OurCalling LLC / via Reuters)

During the lengthy hostage situation, Akram demanded the release of Aafia Siddiqui, according to three senior law enforcement officials briefed on the situation. Akram was ultimately fatally shot by the FBI Hostage Rescue Team, according to a senior law enforcement official.

Support flows to 'changed' Texas synagogue after standoff

  Support flows to 'changed' Texas synagogue after standoff DALLAS (AP) — The tight-knit congregation at a Texas synagogue where four people were held hostage by an armed captor during a 10-hour standoff over the weekend traces its roots back to a gathering organized over 20 years ago by a handful of families who were new to the area. “It was a Jewish holiday and we were just feeling kind of isolated and unsure who else was living here that was Jewish,” Anna Salton Eisen, a founder and former president of Congregation Beth Israel, said Sunday.

Siddiqui, 49, was convicted by a federal jury in 2010 of attempting to kill U.S. officers in Afghanistan and has been held at FMC Carswell, a federal prison in Fort Worth. Her sentencing was supplemented by a terror enhancement.

Akram had been known to U.K. intelligence, a British security source told NBC News. He was probed over potential terrorist links, but the case was closed by the time he traveled to the United States because it did not meet the threshold for further investigation, the source said.

On Sunday, British authorities detained two teenagers in connection with the incident, with a senior law enforcement official telling NBC News the teens were Akram’s sons. The teens had been taken in for questioning but were released without charge, British authorities said.

The official said Akram had been in touch with his sons at some point during the hostage situation on Saturday.

Police have not released the identities of the two teenagers who were detained.

The FBI has continued to investigate the incident as a "terrorism-related matter, in which the Jewish community was targeted."

Feds declare hostage standoff at Texas synagogue an act of terrorism, hate crime .
Federal officials on Friday declared the hostage standoff at a Texas synagogue an act of antisemitic terrorism. “Let me be clear,” Assistant to the President for Homeland Security Jill Sanborn said, “the FBI is and has been treating Saturday’s events as an act of terrorism targeting the Jewish community.” She made the remark during a White House call that sought to reassure unnerved Jewish Americans that law enforcement is dedicated to rooting out terroristic violence.

usr: 1
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