British family of 12 suspected of joining Islamic State in Syria ‘all dead’
A British family of 12 suspected of joining Islamic State in Syria have all died, according to a relative.
Grandfather Muhammed Abdul Mannan, who was 75 when he left Luton in Bedfordshire in 2015, and his wife, Minera Khatun, died of natural causes, while three of their sons were killed fighting for IS, the MailOnline reported.
It is believed the remaining seven, including three unnamed children, were killed in an air strike as they were trying to flee the last IS stronghold, Baghouz, at the time.
Mr Mannan’s son, Shalim Hussain, told the website: “They are all dead. It’s over, finished. We had been trying to find out for some time what had happened to them and it was only confirmed to us recently from Syria.
‘It’s a tragic end and we have drawn a line under it all and are now trying to get on with our lives.”
Mr Hussain previously said, in July 2015, that he believed his father had been “tricked” and the family were being held against their will.
He told ITV: “Everybody knows. It’s not him. It’s not him. He never would have gone to that country unless someone tricked him into it.”
Mr Mannan’s cousin, Abdul Khalid, told MailOnline : “From what we’ve been told, they were trying to get away from Baghouz and make their way to a camp, like so many other people were trying to do at the time, but there was a lot of bombing going on and they got caught up in this.
“They were all together, that’s all we know. We are not sure if they were in a house or out in the open but the fact is that they are all dead. The details of how they actually died don’t really matter to me.”
The family were reported missing after failing to return home from a holiday to Bangladesh in 2015.
Mr Mannan and his wife Minera, then 53, went missing, with their daughter Rajia Khanom, and sons Mohammed Zayd Hussain, Mohammed Toufique Hussain, Mohammed Abil Kashem Saker, and Mohammed Saleh Hussain.
Also with the group was Mohammed Saker’s wife, Sheida Khanam, and Mohammed Saleh Hussain’s wife, Roshanara Begum, and the three unnamed children, who were aged between one and 11 at the time.
Months after arriving in Syria, a statement was released by a British member of IS, supposedly on behalf of the family, saying they “feel safer than ever”.
Relatives said they had noticed no signs of radicalisation prior to the group’s disappearance.