Wednesday, 17 Apr 2024

ISIS surgeon appeals to NHS patients to help bring him home

Muhammad Saqib Raza, 40, has been locked up for over a year in a jail run by Kurdish forces four hours away from Raqqa, the fallen capital of ISIS.

Raza, who has dual British and Pakistani nationality, strangely claimed he was a “victim of anti-terrorism terrorism” because the Home Office had done nothing to get him back to the UK.

Now as many as 300 Brits in Syria could ask to be repatriated as the Islamic Caliphate its in ruins.

Raza, who has a four-year-old son, left his home in Leicester to go to Turkey in 2017 after reportedly becoming increasingly extreme in his Islamist views.

He allegedly went from Turkey to Syria on a humanitarian mission to help in a Turkish-run hospital.

The doctor claimed to have been kidnapped on the Turkish border with Syrian, and sold on to ISIS extremists who then held him against his will.

He said: “In my cell I also heard the Coalition bombing, bombing, bombing and people dying, dying, dying.

“And I wished the bombs would kill me too.”

Last year he was captured in ISIS territory by Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) , who accused him of being a jihadi fighter.

He claimed he had just escaped from ISIS when Kurdish forces captured him outside Raqqa.

But when the forces found a laptop and 13,000 euros on him he could give no explanation for them.

Kurdish intelligence officials think the money and computer were linked to his support for the ISIS fighters and that was the real reason for his presence in the country.

Before he left Leicester, neighbours apparently noticed Raza becoming increasingly religious, growing a long beard and dressing in Islamist clothing.

Raza’s wife, who still lives in Leicester, has divorced him since he left the country.

Because Raza has dual citizenship there is no obligation to bring him back to the UK.

Raza said: “The British government won’t even give me a chance to prove my innocence by bringing me back to England to see my documents and files.

“In fact, not even one British intelligence officer has come to interrogate me in my 419 days in a place that’s not fit for cats and dogs. I call on them, ‘Come talk to me’.”

In an explanation as to his presence on the Turkish-Syrian border after he left the UK Raza claimed that he had already split from his wife and he wanted to avoid paying a £200,000 settlement if they divorced so he decided to distance himself from the break-up.

Being close to a war zone, he said he had planned a week-long trip to help the suffering people of Syria.

He is now also demanding to be moved out of his cell-block which he is sharing with the ISIS fighters and in particular one British man he said he recognises.

He said: “I’m alongside a guy who I saw in ISIS territory. He was a feared intelligence officer. He is probably planning my death.

“This same man says he is the son of a British barrister or something.

“And despite his terrorist background he says he’s confident he can get back into England. People like him are very dangerous.”

Raza compared his plight to that of John Cantlie, a British war photographer and correspondent.

Cantlie was kidnapped in November 2012 in Syria with James Foley and still remains a hostage.

Raza said: “We doctors remained silent when Brits like John Cantlie faced the threat of death.

“I’m ashamed of that. But now my colleagues should break their silence and condemn what has been happening to me.”

He added: “My only crime is being a Muslim. If I was a Jew or a Christian, people would believe I was a humanitarian and not a terrorist.

“I would have been taken out of this hellhole. No-one hates those ISIS head-choppers more than I do.”

He also said feels rejected by the country he left behind, adding: “I’m a son of England, but I’m losing faith in a nation that disowns its own.”

Many of the hundreds of captured foreign ISIS prisoners claim that they have never committed any crime.

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