FBI Identifies Texas Attacker

NEW YORK
Law enforcement teams stage near Congregation Beth Israel while conducting SWAT operations in Colleyville, Texas on Saturday afternoon, Jan. 15, 2022.  (Smiley N. Pool/The Dallas Morning News via AP)

The FBI have announced the identity of the man who held four people hostage for ten hours in Congregation Beth Israel in Texas yesterday.

Malik Faisal Akram, the Colleyville attacker.

The hostage-taker has been identified  44-year-old Malik Faisal Akram, a British citizen.

“The FBI’s Evidence Response Team (ERT) will continue processing evidence at the synagogue. At this time, there is no indication that other individuals are involved,” the FBI said in a statement on Sunday.

The FBI denied the hostage-taker specifically targeted Jews.

Akram died as the FBI entered the building under unclear circumstances; all hostages left safely.

In initial reporting, many outlets erroneously referred to the hostage-taker as Mohammad Siddiqui, the brother of convicted terrorist Aafia Siddiqui, who is held in federal prison nearby.

Akram, in video from inside the congregation, repeatedly referred to Siddiqui as his sister and said he was attempting to secure her release.

Siddiqui, a Pakistani national, allegedly had ties to al-Qaida and is serving 86 years in federal prison for attempting a terror attack on American airbase.

At her trial, Siddiqui demanded all potential jurors be DNA tested if they were Jewish and rejected if they were, and claimed the trial was being run by the Israeli government.

On Sunday, President Joe Biden decried the hostage incident as “an act of terror.”

The Jewish Chronicle reported that someone alleged to be Akram’s brother wrote on social media on behalf of the family that, “We would like to say that we as a family do not condone any of his actions and would like to sincerely apologize wholeheartedly to all the victims involved in the unfortunate incident.”

He added, it is “absolutely inexcusable for a Muslim to attack a Jew.”

The leader of Beth Israel posted on social media that he was “grateful to be alive” and thanked the first responders and law enforcement who rescued him and the others, and thanked the Jewish community worldwide for their prayers during the hostage situation.

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