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  1. ITV Report

Abdul Deghayes murder probed as brother of teenagers killed in Syria stabbed after Brighton car crash

Abdul Deghayes was found just before 9.30pm on Saturday in the passenger seat of a silver Volkswagen Polo. Credit: PA

The brother of two British teenagers killed fighting for Islamists in Syria has died in hospital after being stabbed in a car after it crashed.

Abdul Deghayes, from Brighton, died in the early hours of Sunday morning in the East Sussex city, Sussex Police confirmed as they announced they had launched a murder investigation.

The 22-year-old was found just before 9.30pm on Saturday in the passenger seat of a silver Volkswagen Polo which had crashed into other cars, police said.

His father Abubaker Deghayes has told of his “great shock” at losing a third son in a stabbing.

The silver Volkswagen Polo where Abdul Deghayes was found fatally injured in the passenger seat. Credit: PA

He had a “number of stab wounds” and died from his injuries at the Royal Sussex Country Hospital, a spokesman said. Elm Grove, where the incident took place, remains cordoned off.

Speaking about the loss of his son Mr Deghayes said: “As a family we are in mourning. It is a great shock.

“Adul was very popular with his friends. He loved Brighton a lot. He was a cheerful guy.

“We just know he was found in a car, there was a lot of blood and he was brought to hospital.

“They tried to keep him alive and he died in the morning. I don’t know exactly what happened. We are still waiting for more information.

“I can’t even think of who would take such a step to do this to Adbul.”

Police cordoned off the murder scene near St Joseph’s Church in Brighton. Credit: PA

Elm Grove remained cordoned off on Sunday afternoon.

It is thought the attack may have taken place in nearby Wellington Road, police said.

Officers are carrying out house-to-house enquiries.

A large team of forensics investigators wearing white suits arrived on the scene and have been inspecting the road leading up to a row of cars as well as searching underneath vehicles.

Chief Inspector Andy Bennett appealed for witnesses to come forward and said: "We are trying to establish the exact circumstances of what has led to this young man's tragic death.

"We are aware the car was in collision with other vehicles shortly before he was found to have suffered these injuries, which we are satisfied were caused maliciously and not as a result of the collision."

Forensics officers at the scene where Abdul Deghayes was found injured in the passenger seat of a Volkswagen Polo. Credit: PA

The murder comes amid an ongoing international and public debate about the right of captured Islamist fighters and their supporters to return to the UK, most prominently runaway schoolgirl Shamima Begum, who has given birth to a baby boy. Chief Inspector Andy Bennett appealed for witnesses to come forward and said: “We are trying to establish the exact circumstances of what has led to this young man’s tragic death.

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"We are aware the car was in collision with other vehicles shortly before he was found to have suffered these injuries, which we are satisfied were caused maliciously and not as a result of the collision."

Who is Abdul Deghayes and who were his brothers?

Abdul Deghayes's twin brother of Abdullah, left, and younger brother, Jaffar, both died in Syria.

Abdul – who was jailed in 2017 for drug dealing – is the twin brother of Abdullah who was killed fighting in Syria in 2016 aged 18.

Their younger brother Jaffar, 17, was killed in 2014 while trying to overthrow Bashar Al-Assad’s government.

Speaking at the time of Jaffar’s death their father Abubaker Deghayes said his grief “cannot be described” as he claimed the Government was “criminalising” young Britons who have travelled to the war-torn country.

Abubaker Deghayes urged the government to rethink its approach to returning fighters in 2014. Credit: ITV News

A serious case review published in 2017 found professionals missed opportunities to prevent the two teenage British Muslims being radicalised before they were killed after travelling to fight in Syria.

There was “no recognition” that Abdullah, Jaffar and their three siblings were becoming vulnerable to radicalisation in Brighton, the report said.

Amer Deghayes spoke to ITV News in 2014. Credit: ITV News

There was also little understanding of the part religion played in the lives of Abdullah and Jaffar, who were believed to have been with the al Qaida-affiliated Al-Nusra Front when they died, the review added.

A third brother, Amer Deghayes, a former finance student, also travelled to Syria in a bid to overthrow dictator Bashar Assad’s government.