2 British men believed to be members of the notorious Islamic State group (IS) cell have been seized by Syrian Kurdish fighters, US officials state.
Alexanda Kotey, thirty four, and El Shafee Elsheikh, twenty nine, were the last two members from the cell to remain at large.
The four, all from Greater london, were nicknamed “the Beatles” because of the British accents.
ALL OF US officials said the “execution cell” had beheaded at least 27 Traditional western hostages and tortured many more.
Who were the IS DEFINITELY ‘Beatles’?
- Prophet Emwazi – dubbed Jihadi David, was the masked militant from western London who featured in nasty IS videos, taunting Western capabilities before beheading hostages. Victims exactly who appeared in those videos incorporated British aid workers David Haines and Alan Henning, US media James Foley and Steven Sotloff, and American aid worker Philip Kassig. The alleged ringleader from the crew, he was killed in a drone hit in 2015 in Raqqa , the former de facto IS funds in Syria
- Aine Davis, furthermore from west London, was found guilty of being a senior IS associate and He was jailed in Chicken last year on terrorism charges , after being arrested near Turki in 2015.
- Alexanda Kotey, one more west Londoner, took part in the pain of hostages, the US State Section says , and also acted being a recruiter for IS
- El Shafee Elsheikh “earned a reputation for waterboarding, mock executions, and crucifixions” while serving as the cell’s guard, the US state department states
How were they captured?
The latest arrests were verified by US officials.
Officials quoted by ALL OF US media said the two men have been captured by members of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), that are targeting remnants of IS.
The UK Foreign Office, at the same time, said it did not comment on person cases or investigations.
Their catch was first reported by the New York Situations, who noted that will American officials had wanted to keep your news secret.
The goal was “to allow analysts additional time to pursue the intelligence prospective customers developed from their detention and get ready raids against unsuspecting Islamic Condition targets”, the newspaper said.
The Syrian fighters who also apprehended them told US authorities in mid-January that the two might have been captured, and the men’s identities had been later confirmed using fingerprints as well as other biometric data.
The particular families of the men told the particular BBC they were not aware of the catch until the story was reported simply by news organisations.
What is the state of IS in Syria?
The Islamic Condition group’s self-declared caliphate – the area of control – shrunk quickly last year.
In Oct, the group lost its “capital” associated with Raqqa to the SDF. In the beginning of Nov, it lost Deir-al Zour within Syria on the same day time as it lost al-Qaim in Iraq.
The particular SDF is an alliance of Kurdish and Arab fighters opposed to WILL BE. The US-backed group has performed a key role in driving WILL BE from its strongholds in Syria.
The US has said it seeks to maintain an open-ended military existence in the country to ensure the jihadist group’s beat.
However , the presence of many Kurdish armed forces in northern Syria has alarmed neighbouring Turkey.
Analysis: What happened to all the international fighters?
Gordon Corera, security correspondent
The pair are believed to have provided valuable intelligence subsequent their capture. That may be helpful within answering the wider question associated with what happened to the foreign fighters since the so-called caliphate disintegrated.
How many of the thousands of foreign practitioners were killed and how many visited other countries or would look for to come home? These men may have been priority targets – however, not the only ones.
Their particular capture also raises the issue of what goes on next. They could be put on trial in america, since they were allegedly involved in the eliminating of US hostages – but there could be some in the Trump administration who want to send them to Guantanamo Bay.
And it is not clear issue is – formally – a problem for the UK Government, as you will find reports the pair may have got their UK citizenship stripped from their website using powers available to the Home Workplace.