Statement: Erik Scurfield

Dan Jarvis, Labour MP for Barnsley Central, commenting on reports of the death of Konstandinos Erik Scurfield in Syria, said:

"My first thoughts are with the Scurfield family. They came to me a few weeks ago very worried for their son's safety and tragically it appears their worst fears have been realised. I have been in touch with them this morning and will be doing all I can to support them as their local Member of Parliament.

"It is important to remember that these are still only reports and we don't have all the information yet.

"Erik was an experienced former Royal Marine who was horrified by the atrocities being carried out by ISIS. His family's understanding was that he travelled to Syria hoping to provide medical and humanitarian support as an expert in battlefield medicine.

"The Foreign Office are clear that the situation in Iraq and Syria is very dangerous and that people should not travel to the region.

"There is an issue that needs to be addressed as Erik was certainly not the first person to travel to Syria to join forces resisting ISIS.

"There have been several reports of other British civilians doing the same thing, but the Government confirmed when I recently raised this issue in Parliament that there is currently no system to monitor or record people going to the region with the aim of joining the fight against ISIS.

"I wrote to the Foreign Office regarding this issue some weeks ago and will be now following up that letter in light on these events."

ENDS

Notes to Editors:

Dan Jarvis asked a question in Parliament on 12 February following his meeting with the Scurfield family here: 

www.theyworkforyou.com/wrans/?id=2015-02-09.223854.h&s=%28Syria%29+speaker%3A25067#g223854.q0