Three Britons, one a self-proclaimed “danger tourist” from Birmingham, are reportedly being held by the Taliban’s secret police in Afghanistan. Just over two years after being evacuated from Kabul by British armed troops, Birmingham University graduate Miles Routledge, now 23, has returned to the country.
At the time, he was said to have been caught up in the upheaval caused by the Taliban’s seizure of power. According to the Daily Mail, Routledge was held once more on March 2 on a second visit to the war-torn country.
In a separate instance from January, the Taliban secret police are said to have detained two more British nationals: 53-year-old charity physician Kevin Cornwell and another man who operates a guesthouse in Kabul. Who is this Miles Routledge, and what’s the deal with the Taliban holding him again?
Who is Miles Routledge?
Birmingham native and self-proclaimed “danger tourist” Miles Routledge has become an internet sensation after publishing accounts of his travels to hostile regions.
Even though many Afghans were left behind when he voluntarily entered the war-torn nation in 2021, when the Taliban were in charge, he was allowed a seat on a British Army evacuation flight out of Kabul.
Since then, he seems to have returned to the nation. On Twitter, Routledge is known as Lord Miles, with more than 140,000 followers. In his marketing, he positions himself as someone who “goes to the most dangerous places on Earth for fun.” In 2020, he launched a YouTube channel that regularly posts footage shot in conflict zones.
His prior destinations include war-torn Ukraine and South Sudan. About 60,000 people subscribe to Routledge’s channel on YouTube. He has said, “My Twitter offers goofy content as well as the serious day-to-day stuff, my YouTube is where quick videos are uploaded!” Loughborough University physics graduate Routledge appears to have returned to Afghanistan for unknown reasons. It is speculated that he intended to record content for his online profiles.
In earlier clips, he is shown among Taliban militants using automatic guns. Miles’ mom Susan Routledge expressed concern to the Daily Mail about her son’s situation. Please aid me in discovering what has happened to him and ensuring his safety. Assuming he is receiving appropriate care, that is encouraging to hear. I want whomever is holding him to know that he has my unconditional love and support if there’s any way I can send a message to them.
What his mother has to say?
Miles’ mom Susan Routledge expressed concern to the Daily Mail about her son’s situation. Please aid me in discovering what has happened to him and ensuring his safety. Assuming he is receiving appropriate care, that is encouraging to hear. I simply want whomever is holding him to know that he has my unconditional love and support if there’s any way I can send a message to them.
He’s young and still trying to figure out who he is after graduating college, so he keeps traveling because he enjoys it. Just keep him safe,” she pleaded. Presidium Network negotiator Scott Richards told the Mail, “We can confirm that the men have spoken with family, that the conversation was unscripted, and that they are being treated fairly.” The Presidium Network is aiding the families of Mr. Cornwell and the hotel manager.
“The families had about two minutes of uninterrupted, open dialogue with them. It was obviously a very significant and emotional phone conversation, and it marks a huge improvement in the situation. It was a big relief to the families, and we respect their privacy on the specifics of those calls.
Why have the Taliban captured Miles Routledge?
Together with Kevin Cornwell, a volunteer doctor, and an unnamed hotel manager in Kabul in January 2023, Miles Routledge was captured by officers from the Taliban’s General Directorate of Intelligence (GDI).
Whether or not Miles Routledge’s choice to return to Afghanistan after being rescued by the British Air Force following the fall of Kabul in 2021 had a part in their capture is unknown. The Taliban were probably apprehended by the GDI when their return was discovered. Miles Routledge and two Polish nationals, Adrian Wojcik, 22, and Roman Bilski, 24, were arrested on March 2 after being jailed since January. They are being questioned by the Taliban, according to a top European diplomatic source.