By Peter McLaren-Kennedy • 16 January 2022 • 14:49
The British Foreign Office has confirmed that the Texas synagogue hostage taker was British, after live stream recordings picked up his British accent. The man had entered the Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Texas, taking a rabbi and three others hostage.
The recordings from the synagogue’s live stream captured the suspect entering the facility, as it did his threats to the hostages.
The hostage situation ended around 9 pm USA time last night after a 10 hour standoff, with the FBI freeing the hostages and shooting the suspect. Investigations are still ongoing according to the Special Agent in charge, Matt DeSarno.
DeSarno had said earlier that the investigation will have global reach, he has however declined to name the suspect.
A spokesperson for the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office said it is “aware of the death of a British man in Texas and are in contact with the local authorities”.
In the live stream the hostage-taker was heard demanding the release of Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani neuroscientist suspected of having ties to al Qaeda, who was convicted of trying to kill US military officers while in custody in Afghanistan.
He said he wanted to speak to the neuroscientist who is being held at FMC Carswell in Fort Worth, Texas, following her conviction in 2010.
The motive for attacking the synagogue, which is around 30 miles from Dallas, is still unclear, although police are trying to establish whether he and Siddiqui are related.
DeSarno said they know the identity of the Texas synagogue hostage taker but said: “we are not prepared to release his identity or confirm his identity at this time.”
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Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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