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Two women fight on train in West Yorkshire

Police are appealing for information after a fight took place between two females on a train travelling between Leeds and Dewsbury.

The fight also spilled onto the platform at Dewsbury station.

Officers want to hear from anyone who witnessed the incident on board the 3.41 York to Liverpool Lime Street service at around 4.30pm on Thursday, 2 July.

Two females started fighting in the vestibule area on the service. Three men attempted to split them up but the fight continued and spilled onto the platform at Dewsbury. One of the women involved had large clumps of hair pulled out of her head and sustained bruises and scratches to her arms. We are now trying to determine exactly what happened on the train and I would urge anyone who was travelling on the service, or on the platform at Dewsbury, and who witnessed the incident to please come forward and speak to us. The train was very busy at the time of the incident so we believe a number of people may have information.

– Investigating Officer PC Katie Purcel, British Transport Police

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Society 'must be vigilant' to spot radicalisation signs

British society must stay "vigilant" to spot signs of radicalisation in young people, Philip Hammond has said.

Talha Asmal, 17, reportedly became Britain's youngest suicide bomber when he blew himself up while fighting for Islamic State in Iraq.

Speaking about the teenager's death, the foreign secretary said: "Teachers, parents, social workers, people in the community all need to be vigilant and look for signs of early radicalisation."

Dewsbury MP calls for community to unite

Dewsbury MP Paula Sherriff has called for the community to unite after news about the teenager suicide bomber, Talha Asmal.

Both myself and the community in Dewsbury are deeply shocked and devastated by the news of Talha Asmal. I met his family yesterday evening and they are understandably traumatised by what has happened.

What we have to do now is come together and do all we can to ensure no more impressionable young people are brainwashed by those behind Isis. These evil people use the internet and social media to target impressionable young people, painting a very different picture to the reality of what is really happening in Isis-controlled areas.

We need to ensure that we have a robust plan to work with the community; we need work with the schools, the mosques, churches, the community groups and parents to try and ensure that young people are aware of the reality of what is actually happening in Syria and Iraq.

There is so much good about Dewsbury, yet once again our town has hit the headlines for all the wrong reasons. I want our community to now demonstrate all that is positive about Dewsbury by remaining united, working together to come up with strategies to ensure that no other boys or girls follow this path.”

– Paula Sherriff, MP for Dewsbury
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Ex-extremist: No doubt teen suicide bomber groomed

A man once considered the "godfather" of the British jihadi movement has said there is no doubt a 17-year-old - who has apparently become Britain's youngest suicide bomber - was groomed.

Abu Muntasir, who used to recruit extremists, told Good Morning Britain that Talha Asmal had committed an "abhorrent crime" and said parents need to have more communication with their children to prevent similar tragedies.

"There is grooming, no doubt - I know how we used to convince people by ignoring a lot of facts on the ground, ignoring reality and alternative views amongst Muslims and Muslim teaching," he said.

"So the parents need to have more communication with their children, they need to have more of an overseeing aspect of how to be a good parent.

"It's totally despicable what he (Talha) has done, it is an abhorrent crime, and we should be very careful."

Dewsbury suicide bomber - Yvette Cooper statement

"This is a very disturbing case and our thoughts are with the families and friends of those who died or were injured in this appalling terrorist attack.

"This case shows how important it is for the Government to have a proper counter-terrorism strategy, which not only includes measures to track, monitor and prosecute terror suspects, but also includes a much stronger plan for community-led action to prevent young people being drawn towards the lies and hate filled ideology of Isil.

"We have known for a long time that Isil was using social media to recruit young people to join their bloody war.

"So why don't we have a proper plan in place for communities to be able to proactively counter the lies they spread and undermine their attempts to glorify the civil war they are fuelling?

"Despite a new counter terrorism strategy, the Government are well behind on tackling this. "Their proposals are confused and they continue to refuse to properly refuse community-led Prevent programmes which could make a massive difference in stopping young people being drawn in by terrorist groups."

– Yvette Cooper MP, Shadow Home Secretary

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"Evil ISIS groomers brainwashed Talha" - ex MP Malik

Shahid Malik, a former government minister and a family friend of the Asmals described them as "a beautiful, caring, peace-loving and incredibly humble family"

"The local community grieves with them today,

"Ebrahim (the father) and the family's world has been shattered in the cruellest of ways and one which no family should ever have to experience.

"Talha was a truly sweet-natured, helpful, respectful and friendly kid and it is incredibly difficult to reconcile this Talha with the suicide-bomber at an raqi oil installation.

"My thoughts and prayers are obviously also with those killed at the oil installation and their families.

"It is disturbing to see how relaxed he looks in the Isis photographs allegedly taken just prior to his suicide mission.

"He looks at peace. It's like he's ready to go and meet his maker. This is a clear indication of just how successful the evil Isis groomers have been in poisoning and brainwashing Talha and kids like him..

"We must defeat Isis in mosques and communities across the country. This is a generational struggle and everyone must be willing to rise to the challenge.

"Importantly, it's a struggle which can only succeed if it is one which is led by Muslims themselves."

– Shahid Malik, former Dewsbury MP

Dewsbury teen in ISIS bombing - Police statement

"The police have been made aware of media reports with regard to the death of a British National in Iraq.

"The identity of the person who has reportedly died has not been confirmed at this time and we are unable to comment further.

"We are aware that large numbers of British nationals are travelling to the Middle East for a variety of reasons and we understand that some of those travelling have resided in West Yorkshire.

"We continue to support families who have loved ones that are believed to have travelled and the local communities who understandably may also have concerns.

"The Foreign Office advises against all travel to Syria and some areas of Iraq. Only essential travel should be considered to other parts of Iraq. Check before making any plans."

“As part of the Prevent initiative West Yorkshire Police is committed to working with communities and local authorities, to highlight the dangers associated with radicalisation and travel to regions such as Syria and Iraq.

" We are all working together to help identify vulnerable members of our society and intervene and engage them before it is too late.”

“If anyone has concerns that a friend or relative may be vulnerable to radicalisation, expressing extreme views or contemplating travelling to Syria or Iraq, it is vital that we work together to try and prevent that person from travelling.

"Those who travel to Syria and parts of Iraq are likely to witness extreme violence and could become victims of violence themselves. In addition some may be drawn into taking part and committing violent acts themselves. Their families left at home will be left devastated.

"No parent would want to see their child put in danger, exploited or put in a situation where they face death.

“We are extremely keen to continue in developing the work we do with partners in order to help families understand the nature of the threat from extremist material on the internet and other publications, whilst also heightening their awareness of the signs that indicate if someone is being exploited.

“I would encourage anyone with concerns around individuals being radicalised to have the confidence in coming forward and sharing their concerns with the local police, or local authority safeguarding units either by contacting 101 or attending their local Neighbourhood Policing Teams, they can intervene and provide you and your family with the appropriate support and advice. “

– Assistant Chief Con. Russ Foster. West Yorkshire Police

ISIS suicide bomber's family statement

The family of suspected ISIS suicide bomber Talha Asma, from Dewsbury, who the terror organisation has claimed was one of four men who took part in yesterday's attack on an Iraqi oil refinery killing themselves and 11 other people, have issued a statement through the Counter Terrorism Unit.

Talha Asmal

"Late yesterday evening some news outlets via their online platforms carried a story that a young Britain had been killed whilst with ISIS in Iraq.

"Although the information within these reports has not been confirmed and the relevant UK authorities are working hard to verify the facts, we can confirm that the photographs shown of a youth purportedly named Abu Yusuf Al Britany appear to show our 17 year old son Talha.

"Talha comes from a close knit, hardworking, peace loving and law abiding British Muslim family. The entire family unreservedly condemns and abhors all acts of violence wherever perpetrated.

"Talha himself was a loving, kind, caring and affable teenager. He never harboured any ill will against anybody nor did he ever exhibit any violent, extreme or radical views of any kind.

  1. Talha’s tender years and naivety were it seems however exploited by persons unknown who hiding behind the anonymity of the world wide web targeted and befriended Talha and engaged in a process of deliberate and calculated grooming of him.

" As a result of this and completely unbeknown to us, his family and entirely against our wishes he ended up travelling it seems to Iraq.

"Whilst there it appears that Talha fell under the spell of individuals who continued to prey on his innocence and vulnerability to the point where if the press reports are accurate he was ordered to his death by so called ISIS handlers and leaders too cowardly to do their own ‘dirty’ work.

"We are all naturally utterly devastated and heartbroken by the unspeakable tragedy that now appears to have befallen us.

"We need time and understanding to come to terms with our unimaginable and painful loss.

"As a family we would like to take this opportunity to unequivocally state that ‘ISIS’ are not Islam. "They do not represent in any way, shape or form Islam and Muslims and we are no longer prepared to allow a barbaric group like ‘ISIS’ to hijack our faith. ‘ISIS’ Not and Never in our name.

"As a family we would urge anyone who has any concerns about their own family members being exploited in a similar way to seek the help and advice of the Police as soon as ever possible.

"We are all understandably grief stricken and do not propose to make any further press statements at this stage. We remain confident that all media and press outlets will wish to respect our need for privacy at this hugely difficult time."

– The family of Talha Asmal
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