London: British Prime Minister David Cameron has written to the family of an Indian-origin British doctor who died in a Syrian jail, saying Damascus must "answer for" his "sickening" death, a source said on Sunday.
Syria claims Abbas Khan, who was arrested last year after travelling to Aleppo to treat wounded civilians, committed suicide. But a British minister said this week that he was "in effect murdered" by the regime.
A British government source confirmed that Cameron had written to Khan`s family.
It is understood that he wrote: "Abbas`s death is a sickening and appalling tragedy and it is right that the Syrian regime should answer for it."
Relatives of the doctor, a father of two children, have dismissed Syria`s claim that he took his own life just days before he was due to be freed and handed over to a British lawmaker.
The body of the 32-year-old orthopaedic surgeon was flown back to London from Beirut today. An autopsy will be conducted to determine how he died.
The family`s lawyer, Nabeel Sheikh, said relatives were "relieved that his body has been repatriated" and that the body was being transferred to a coroner`s court in east London, where tests would be carried out.
Sheikh told AFP that pathologists would be looking for signs of torture on the body.