- Imran Ameen, 39, wife Farzana, 40, and their five children have vanished
- The family of seven, who are from Bradford, were last seen on October 5
- Police believe the family have left for Turkey and are heading to Syria
- Farzana told family members in Pakistan 'I'm doing what's best for the kids'
A missing Muslim couple from Bradford are feared to have fled to Syria with their five young children, leaving their family 'totally shocked' and sparking an urgent appeal to find them.
Police say Imran Ameen, 39, his wife, Farzana, 40, and their five children, who are aged between five and 15, are believed to have travelled to Turkey on one way tickets before they head to Syria.
Their children Isma Imran, age 15, Moeen Imran, age 14, Mohammed Muneeb Imran, age 11, Ismail Imran, age eight and Mohammed Imran age five have travelled with them.
Mother-of-five Farzana, from Bradford, West Yorkshire, told family members shortly before her disappearance: 'I'm doing what's best for the kids.'
Police say Bradford family Imran Ameen, 39, (left) his wife, Farzana, 40, (right) and their five children, aged between five and 15, are believed to have travelled to Turkey on one way tickets before they head to Syria
Missing: Teenagers Isma , age 15, (pictured left) and her brother Moeen Imran, 14, (right)
Although the family were not known to the police before they went missing on Tuesday, police have admitted that Imran's brother, 30-year-old Rehan Ameen, has not been seen since June - and is also thought to have travelled to Turkey.
West Yorkshire Police said the family were last seen on October 5 but were only reported missing yesterday.
This afternoon, speaking outside West Yorkshire Police's Operations Centre in Wakefield Assistant Chief Constable, Russ Foster, said: 'West Yorkshire Police are appealing for help to find a family that is missing.
'They are believed to have travelled to Manchester airport on Tuesday October 6 and travelled to Antalya in Turkey.
'Their current whereabouts is unknown.
'We understand they have travelled to Turkey on a one-way ticket and while this is being treated as a missing persons inquiry we are keeping an open mind and haven't ruled out the possibility that the family may intend to travel to Syria or Iraq.'
Police said the children's welfare is the 'primary concern', while Farzana's cousin Arshid Siddique said the family are 'totally shocked' by what has happened.
ACC Foster confirmed the family had travelled from Manchester Airport last Tuesday on a one-way ticket to the Turkish city of Antalya.
Mother-of-five Farzana, from Bradford, West Yorkshire, told family members shortly before her disappearance: 'I'm doing what's best for the kids' (pictured: the abandoned family home)
He said: 'We are really concerned, there is a clear indication there is a one way ticket.
'We know Turkey is a well-trodden path and a gateway to Syria and parts of Iraq. That is our major concern - there are no further travel plans.The trail stops in Antalya in Turkey.'
He said they may have gone to join Imran's brother Rehan Ameen, 30, who has not been seen in months and is thought to have travelled to Turkey as well.
Rehan was last seen on June 29 but police said Rehan was also 'not on the radar at all' and is thought to have made the trip without children or a female partner.
ACC Foster said the family had previously not been known to the police before they went missing and all would be done to try and bring them back to the UK.
He said: 'We know very little about the family this is the first time the family has come to the notice of West Yorkshire Police.
'Our responsibilities are safeguarding children and will work to find out where they are and work with the Turkish authorities to repatriate them to the UK.
'Syria and Iraq is a volatile area, it is dangerous and certainly not the place to take young children.
'Once they cross that territory into Syria, there is no diplomatic relationships with Syria at this moment in time and it is a volatile country, it is challenging and we have no jurisdiction over that.'
Family member Mr Siddique has revealed extended family who live in Pakistan heard from Farzana yesterday, when she text them to say she was doing 'what was best' for her children.
It is believed the family previously told friends Imran had a new job in Sharjah, in the United Arab Emirates.
A few weeks ago, Farzana took her mother - who is believed to suffer from Alzheimer's and was cared for by her daughter - to Pakistan, telling friends she would get her mother settled.
She then returned to the UK before the family left the country together.
Mother-of-five Farzana Ameen (pictured far right) with her mother and brother at home in Bradford
Mr Siddique said the family did not say goodbye to anyone before they fled.
The family's semi-detached home was deserted and dark this morning and the curtains were pulled shut.
A family friend has described how one night there was screaming and shouting coming from the family home.
During the incident, which happened around six months to a year ago, the police turned up and the couple's daughter, Isma, was taken out of the house and put into a police car.
The friend - who spoke on the condition of anonymity - said there was an ambulance at the home as well.
The reason behind the incident was never revealed , although since then, the daughter has not attended school.
Mr Siddique, who lives just over the road from the family, said he was 'totally shocked' that they might have gone to Syria. Speaking this morning, he said: 'I can't believe anyone in their right mind would take their kids to a warzone.
'I'm sympathetic but I wouldn't take my kids there.'
He said he had seen a lot of police cars on the street and that is when he knew 'something was not right'.
'It's a terrible shock. Imran has a little online business selling car parts, a quiet guy. A nicer guy you could not meet,' he said. 'Farzana looked after her mother in the next door house, she was unfortunately bedridden.
'I think a couple of weeks ago they went to Pakistan, her and my aunts, and they dropped her mother off in Pakistan and came back and I saw her the day before she went.
'Imran told me he had a job offer in Sharjah. The strange thing was you never saw anyone before they went, they never said good bye.
Farzana's cousin Arshid Siddique (pictured) said the family are 'totally shocked' by what has happened
'There is my sister up the road who Farzana is close with, my aunty down the road, she didn't say bye to anybody.
'Yesterday I told her brother in Pakistan, this is what is happening on the street and his sister is obviously missing. So he found out yesterday and he didn't want to believe it.
'I spoke to him about 10 or 15 mins ago and he doesn't know where they are.
She has spoken to him and sent him messages and apparently the last message said whatever she is doing she is doing for the kids.
'It is a terrific shock. This is totally out of the blue to us. She was looking after her mother day and night so you never expect her to jump ship and leave her mum.'
Mr Siddique said on Monday there was a lot of unmarked police cars on the street and officers went into the house and took computers and bags out.
He said Farzana was originally born in Leeds, West Yorkshire, and said: 'A nicer couple you could not meet. 'This is something you would never expect ever.'
Mr Siddique said the children go to nearby St Matthews Primary School while one of their daughters attends Bradford Academy.
Imran's parents are believed to live next door to their son and his father is a barrister.
A close friend of Farzana said the family told friends they were moving to Dubai because Imran had been offered a job in IT.
The friend, who has known Farzana for 12 years, said she was shocked by the news they might be in Turkey.
The woman, who also lives in Bradford but did not want to be named, said Farzana had de-registered her children from school recently.
The friend was unclear when Farzana had revealed this to her, but said: 'I was quite shocked to be honest with you, they didn't show any indication they were going to Turkey.'
She said: 'The story was, the whole family were going to Dubai because he had got a job in IT. They told that to everybody.
'I said I'd drop them off at the airport but she said no, we've hired a car and we are going to take ourselves to the airport. I didn't think then.
'You know you have family here, friends, people at school, me, people coming and going.
'You would never ever think this is what is going to happen.'
The friend said the last time she spoke to Farzana was on Monday, October 5, the day before she left.
'She said she would get me a contact number and we were laughing, I said I would come and visit you. She did said to me they might come back, have a two week trial period.
'But now you look back on it is seems a bit fishy. I am worried for them now, is she going to come back?'
She added: 'They family were quite alright. She was, a bit, always reserved. Her husband is quite reserved, if he was there he would speak, but kept himself to himself.'
She said the family had lived in the area for 12 years or more.
'I find it quite shocking, she had a life for herself here, she had everything, she had kids, she had family,' she said.
Leading Imam Qari Asim said: 'Details are sketchy at the moment but if they have gone there to fight or take part it is absolutely shocking.
'And I think it also goes to show just how powerful the propaganda of IS is - that they are able to penetrate in our homes in Yorkshire, and as a result young families are travelling to Syria.'
Ishtiaq Ahmed, of the Bradford Council for Mosques, said he did not know the family personally but appealed for the community to tell the police any relevant information.
Mr Ahmed told BBC Radio Leeds: 'I think West Yorkshire Police are right in making an appeal to the community and if there is anyone in the community who has information about the whereabouts of this family it's important that they give that information to the police so the police can do whatever needs to be done to make sure the children are safe.'
When asked if his organisation had done enough following the disappearance of the Dawood family earlier this year, he said: 'I think over the years and months we have worked with our membership through mosques and through our faith schools and through other community relations to basically emphasise to individuals and families that Syria not a safe place for anyone to travel.
'And, particularly, it's not a safe place for young people and therefore I think people would be taking a great risk if they were to flee and go to that part of the world under the current circumstances.'
He said: 'We need to know more more information regarding this family - about their whereabouts and what their motivation may be.
'But generally I think people are listening and our taking our message very seriously but we need to go on and we need to keep on pushing this message.'
Earlier this year, sisters Khadija Dawood, 30, Sugra Dawood, 34, and Zohra Dawood, 33, also from Bradford, went missing after going on an Islamic pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia with their nine children.
It is believed they entered Syria to join the Islamic State group.