British police say a mother and her four young children from London who were believed to be on their way to Syria have been detained in Turkey.

British counter-terrorism officials appealed for information after the 33-year-old woman and the four children, aged 4 to 12, went missing from their home in east London last week.

Scotland Yard said the force has received confirmation from Turkish authorities that the five were detained in Turkey Tuesday. The force said all were safe and well.

British police say they have seen a sharp increase in the number of people, including many young Britons, suspected of travelling to Syria to join the Islamic State group. Authorities want to stop the Britons in Turkey, a key transit point, before they head into Syria.