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British spy agencies face questions about how London man became Islamic State's 'Jihadi John'

CAGE research director, Asim Qureshi talks during a press conference held by the CAGE human rights charity in London, Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015. A British-accented militant who has appeared in beheading videos released by the Islamic State group in Syria bears ìstriking similaritiesî to a man who grew up in London, a Muslim lobbying group said Thursday. Mohammed Emwazi has been identified by news organizations as the masked militant more commonly known as ìJihadi John.î London-based CAGE, which works with Muslims in conflict with British intelligence services, said Thursday its research director, Asim Qureshi, saw strong similarities, but because of the hood worn by the militant, ìthere was no way he could be 100 percent certain.î (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

CAGE research director, Asim Qureshi talks during a press conference held by the CAGE human rights charity in London, Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015. A British-accented militant who has appeared in beheading videos released by the Islamic State group in Syria bears ìstriking similaritiesî to a man who grew up in London, a Muslim lobbying group said Thursday. Mohammed Emwazi has been identified by news organizations as the masked militant more commonly known as ìJihadi John.î London-based CAGE, which works with Muslims in conflict with British intelligence services, said Thursday its research director, Asim Qureshi, saw strong similarities, but because of the hood worn by the militant, ìthere was no way he could be 100 percent certain.î (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)  (The Associated Press)

British spy agencies are facing questions about how a young Londoner who was on their radar as part of terrorist investigations was able to travel to Syria and become the masked militant known as "Jihadi John."

Officials have identified the man shown in hostage-beheading videos as Mohammed Emwazi, a Kuwait-born computer graduate in his mid-20s.

Emwazi was known to the British intelligence services since 2009, in connection with investigations into Islamic terrorism in Somalia and elsewhere.

He is one of a number of men from West London believed to have traveled to Syria in 2012. Several are now dead.

Chris Phillips, former head of Britain's National Counterterrorism Security Office, said Friday the case showed that police and intelligence agencies lacked the resources to monitor a growing number of suspects.