Watch Two Hostages Escape Colleyville Synagogue Attacker Minutes Before He Is Shot Dead by Police
21:11 GMT 16.01.2022 (Updated: 21:14 GMT 16.01.2022)
Mentally-ill British man Malik Faisal Akram, who had recently travelled to the US and acquired a handgun on 'the street', took a rabbi and three other men hostage on the morning of the Jewish sabbath. He was later killed when FBI agents stormed the building.
The tense moment when two Jewish hostages escaped from a Texas synagogue was captured on video.
In the footage from ABC news local affiliate WFAA, two men suddenly burst out of a door in the Congregation Beth Israel synagogue in the town of Colleyville.
Suspect Malik Faisal Akram, a British national
from Blackburn in Lancashire who had recently travelled to the the US, is seen pursuing the pair gun-in-hand, only to halt in the doorway before retreating back inside.
FBI SWAT team commandoes stormed the building on Saturday night. Akram was killed, although full details of the circumstances have yet to be released.
An FBI spokesman said later that the British hostage-taker was "singularly focused on one issue," which was not "specifically related to the Jewish community."
Akram took four hostages
at the synagogue during worship on Saturday morning, the Jewish sabbath. He reportedly demanded the release of Dr Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani neuroscientist, but released one hostage earlier in the day.
Siddiqui was jailed for 86 years in 2010 for the attempted murder of US military officers while under arrest in Afghanistan, in circumstances which her Houston-based lawyers still contest.
Akram's family said they were "devastated" by his death and "do not condone any of his actions and would like to sincerely apologize wholeheartedly to all the victims involved in the unfortunate incident".
His brother Gulbar revealed the family had talked to Faisal for hours during the siege in a bid to persuade him to surrender.
While the hostage-taker was "suffering from mental health issues we were confident that he would not harm the hostages," Gulbar Akram said. "There was nothing we could have said to him or done that would have convinced him to surrender."