Belfast Telegraph

Being quizzed by PSNI: Derry 'jihadi' who has just returned home from Syrian conflict zone

By Chris Kilpatrick

A young Muslim-convert who is believed to have travelled to the Middle East to fight alongside Syrian rebels has been arrested on his return to Northern Ireland.

Eamon Bradley left his Melmore Gardens home in the Creggan area of Londonderry earlier this year, telling his family he was off on holiday to Turkey.

But the 25-year-old is understood to have travelled to Syria to join rebels battling against the country's Assad regime.

Since then he has been pictured with AK-47 assault rifles and on horseback dressed in militia clothing.

He was yesterday arrested by detectives in Derry and taken to Antrim Serious Crime Suite to be questioned about his alleged actions in Syria.

It is understood he arrived back in the north west just days ago.

In an online blog, Bradley previously said he was not afraid of death and was prepared to become a martyr.

The PSNI searched Bradley's home earlier this year, removing a number of items including mobile phones.

Friends of the Derry man appear to be confused about his decision to convert to Islam.

The former St Joseph's student lists a number of books he is interested in on his Facebook site, including The Koran and Medicine Of The Prophet.

Friends on the site include a number of people based in the Middle East.

In his online blog, Bradley told how he battled drugs and was disillusioned with education as a youth.

He said he was "empty inside", and attempted to overdose on prescription drugs.

"It was around this time Allah Most Great showed me the way," he wrote in the blog.

Of the September 11 attacks of 2001, he said: "I was also looking at the Twin Towers on YouTube quite a lot and I was convinced that it wasn't what it seemed to be."

He added: "Today's world is difficult for every individual in different ways.

"But if we keep hold of the rope of Allah with even one hand there is a way out."

A brother of Bradley previously denied he had aligned himself with Islamic State.

He said: "My ma and da were worried about that last week and my da texted and asked what about this religious crowd and he said, 'Listen, we're against them ones, we're fighting against them'."

He insisted his sibling was not an extremist.

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