Family of Portsmouth Syria fighter Assad Uzzaman left ‘heartbroken’ by his death

A picture of Assad Uzzaman posted on the internet
A picture of Assad Uzzaman posted on the internet
HMS Duncan has returned to Portsmouth after spending three months in the Mediterranean Picture:  L/Phot Louise George

HMS Duncan returns to Portsmouth after three months away at sea

  • Portsmouth South MP says family of Assad Uzzaman was ‘a much loved son’
  • She believes he travelled to Syria with good intentions
  • He is the last of a group of five to die after travelling to the country from Portsmouth
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THE family of a man who died in Syria are ‘heartbroken’ an MP has said.

Portsmouth South MP Flick Drummond met with Assad Uzzaman’s family this morning.

Mr Uzzaman, 25, was among a group of six who travelled to Syria to fight in 2013.

His death, announced late on Saturday night by an academic, means five of the group have died with the sixth jailed.

In a statement Mrs Drummond said: ‘I have visited the family of Assad Uzzaman this morning and they are heartbroken.

‘They asked me to speak to the Foreign Office to find out how Assad died and whether it would be possible to bring his remains back to Portsmouth.

Many people will have strong views about what Assad has done, but he was a much loved son from a family who were completely integrated with British society with no extremist sympathies whatsoever

Portsmouth South MP Flick Drummond

‘I have personally passed these requests to the Foreign Office who assured me they will look into it as a top priority.

‘Many people will have strong views about what Assad has done, but he was a much loved son from a family who were completely integrated with British society with no extremist sympathies whatsoever.

‘I believe that Assad and his friends were well meaning when they went to Syria to fight against the government there but it’s quite clear that the situation changed with the rise of Isil - an organisation that believes life is cheap.

‘The lesson here is simple: anyone who thinks it a good idea to fight in Syria on any side should consider the very real possibility it will cost them their life.’

The News revealed today Mr Uzzaman wept when he told his family he wanted to leave Syria but could not do so due to the extremists he was with.

He also feared communications with family back home in Portsmouth were being monitored by Isil chiefs.

Few details are available about his death but yesterday supporters online were praising him as a ‘martyr’.

Mr Uzzaman travelled to the country in October 2013 and was the cousin of Ifthekar Jaman, 23, from Somers Town, who also died in the fighting in December 2013.

The group flew from Gatwick Airport in October 2013 to Turkey before crossing the border. They called themselves the Britani Brigade Bangladeshi Bad Boys.

All have now died, including Mehdi Hassan, 19, a former pupil at St John’s College in Southsea, who died in October last year, and Manunur Roshid, 24, from Buckland.

They are believed to have died in fighting at Kobane, a Syrian border city.

Primark supervisor Muhammad Hamidur Rahman, 25, died in August last year. The deaths have previously prompted condemnations of those who radicalise young men.

Mashudur Choudhury, 31, from the city, was one of the group.

He was jailed for four years over terror offences in December last year.