Two teenage boys have been stopped at Sydney Airport trying to get to conflict zones in the Middle East

Photo: Spencer Platt/ Getty

Sydney brothers, aged 16 and 17, have been stopped at Sydney Airport on suspicion they planned to go to conflict zones in the Middle East.

Customs and Border Protection officers stopped the two on Friday night. They had return tickets to a destination in the Middle East and were travelling without the knowledge of their parents.

Searches of their luggage further raised suspicions.

The brothers were later allowed to leave the airport with their parents.

Last month Perth university student Muhammed Sheglabo, aged 23, told his parents he was going camping but he instead fled the country to join the terrorist group Islamic State.

“What we have here are two teenagers who have been intercepted on their way to a potentially very dangerous situation,” says Immigration Minister Peter Dutton.

“This highlights afresh the need to work within communities and with parents to disrupt attempts to brainwash our young people.”

The new Foreign Fighters Act allows customs to detain people where there are reasonable grounds to suspect that the person is intending to commit a Commonwealth offence or is a threat to national security or the security of a foreign country.

The law is designed to stop Australians fighting in foreign conflicts and makes it unlawful to travel to areas declared as terrorist zones.

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