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Syria-bound teenagers are returned to UK.

THREE teenagers detained by officials in Turkey as they tried to travel to Syria have been arrested on suspicion of preparing terrorist acts after returning to the UK, police said.

The trio, a man aged 19 and two 17-year-old boys, from north-west London, were arrested yesterday by Scotland Yard's counter terrorism officers.

On Friday, police were made aware that the two boys had gone missing and were believed to be travelling to Syria. Inquiries revealed they had travelled with a third person, the 19-year-old man.

A Met police spokesman said: "Officers alerted the Turkish authorities who were able to intercept all three males, preventing travel to Syria.

"On Saturday, the three males returned to the UK and at approximately 11.10am were arrested on suspicion of preparation of terrorist acts contrary to section five of the Terrorism Act 2006.

"All three have been taken to a central London police station, where they remain in custody."

It comes just weeks after an international police hunt was launched to find three London schoolgirls who travelled to Istanbul on their journey to Syria.

However, Shamima Begum, 15, Amira Abase, also 15, and Kadiza Sultana, 16, who are pupils at Bethnal Green Academy, are now feared to have reached the conflict zone to become so-called "jihadi brides" with Islamic State.

MP Keith Vaz, chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee, said the latest detention suggests the flow of young people intending to travel to Syria is "on a much larger scale than we envisaged".

"I welcome the action that has been taken by the Turkish authorities," he said.

"We need to prevent people going in the first place and that is why parents need to be vigilant but we also need cooperation from the Turkish authorities in order to stop them from going further.

"We need to be vigilant. Clearly this flight of young people to Turkey in order to go to Syria is on a much larger scale than we envisaged."

Concerns about how Turkish authorities dealt with the disappearance of the three missing girls last month, raised by their families, proved how important it is to "act quickly", he added.

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Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Geographic Code:7SYRI
Date:Mar 16, 2015
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