2 Teens Arrested in England in Connection to Texas Synagogue Hostage Event

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A gunman who took four people hostage at a Dallas-area synagogue and was himself killed as federal agents stormed the temple was identified on Sunday as a British citizen, while police in England said they had detained two teenagers for questioning in the investigation.

The daylong siege at the Congregation Beth Israel synagogue in Colleyville, about 16 miles northeast of Fort Worth, Texas, ended Saturday night with all four hostages released unharmed and with the suspect dead. It was not clear whether the gunman took his own life or was slain by members of the FBI hostage rescue team.

The suspect was reported to have demanded the release of a Pakistani-born scientist serving a federal prison sentence in the Dallas-Forth Worth area during 10 hours of tense hostage negotiations with authorities.

The FBI on Sunday identified the suspect as Malik Faisal Akram, 44, a citizen of the United Kingdom but did not say how or when he entered the United States.

Akram’s brother Gulbar posted on Facebook that the suspect, from the industrial town of Blackburn in the north of England, suffered from mental illness and said the family had spent all night at the Blackburn police station “liaising with Faisal, the negotiators, FBI etc.”

“There was nothing we could have said to him or done that would have convinced him to surrender,” Gulbar wrote on the Blackburn Muslim Community’s Facebook page.

He said the FBI was due to fly into the UK “later today,” saying that the family as a result could say little more.

“We would like to say that we as a family do not condone any of his actions and would like to sincerely apologize wholeheartedly to all the victims involved in the unfortunate incident,” the brother wrote.

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