2 Detained Brits May Have Helped Syrian Extremists

Two 20-somethings arrested at Heathrow
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 10, 2012 11:45 AM CDT
A file photo of police patrolling at Heathrow Airport.   (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

(Newser) – Two 26-year-old Brits detained at Heathrow last night may have been involved in the kidnapping of two journalists in Syria, authorities say. Both are being held on suspicion of supporting terrorist activity, report the BBC and the Guardian. Another intriguing detail from Sky News: One of them is reportedly a doctor with the National Health Service who took a sabbatical to travel to Syria to help Islamist extremists. Both were arrested upon their return to the country.

The details are sketchy, but the gist from media reports is that the pair are British Muslims who went to Syria to support jihadists who want to oust Bashar al-Assad and set up an Islamist state. Authorities think the group they joined kidnapped British photographer John Cantlie and Dutch journalist Jeroen Oerlemans, both of whom were held for a week in July, and shot while trying to escape before being released. Cantlie has said he was treated by a young doctor with a British accent.

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