ISIS bride loses UK citizenship appeal case

ISIS bride Shamima Begum lost her Court of Appeal challenge over the decision to remove her British citizenship, it was revealed on February 23 by The Daily Mail and other British news outlets. 

The Court of Appeal is the second most senior court in England and Wales and is based in Westminster, London. 

Now 24, Begum, who was born and raised in the British capital, fled to Syria and joined the notorious terror group at the age of 15 back in 2015. She has argued that she is now a reformed character and was “groomed” into Islamic extremism in numerous TV interviews. 

Then Home Secretary Sajid Javid stripped her of her citizenship back in 2019 and she has since been living in numerous refugee camps in Syria. 

During her time with the group, she married an ISIS gunman, Yago Riedijk, as well as having three children with him. 

The ISIS bride scandal made all the front pages of UK newspapers in 2019 as she pleaded for entry to the country for the birth of her son. 

Just weeks after the confiscation of her citizenship, Begum’s baby died and she also noted that she had two other children who both died in a refugee camp in Syria. 

For a number of years now, Shamima Begum has been a political football by the commentariat and politicians alike. 

READ: Key ISIS official captured in Northern Syria

During her Court of Appeal case, human rights charity Reprieve said in a statement, “This whole episode shames ministers who would rather bully a child victim of trafficking than acknowledge the UK’s responsibilities. Stripping citizenship in bulk and abandoning British families in desert prisons is a terrible, unsustainable policy designed to score cheap political points. 

“Rather than demonise Shamima Begum, ministers should reckon with the institutional failures that enabled ISIS to traffic vulnerable British women and girls.What the courts have recognised today is that this was a political decision. It is now a political problem, and the government holds the key to solving it. 

“If the government thinks that Shamima Begum has committed a crime, she should be prosecuted in a British court. Citizenship stripping is not the answer.” 

Some have also argued that the UK government would refrain from stripping the citizenship of a person from a white and non-Muslim background had they been invloved in similar shenanigans as Begum, accusing the governing Conservative Party of shifting further to the right as well as pandering to anti-Muslim sentiment, which has skyrocketed in the country since the start of the Israel-Gaza conflict. 

Progressive activist and academic Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu argued on X, formerly Twitter, “Shamima Begum’s mistake was marrying an ISIS soldier and not an IDF soldier. She married into the ‘wrong’ terrorist army. 

“If only she had the foresight at 15, she would be back in the UK now with passport unrevoked and British citizenship intact. 

“She’s the wrong race with the wrong faith who married the wrong terrorist. What a silly girl. Somebody somewhere is taking notes.” 

Some have argued that Israel is a terrorist state and that the UK should cease sending arms to it. Weekly Palestine solidarity marches continue to attract hundreds of thousands in London despite the smears from the political class. 

Begum is yet to comment regarding the Court of Appeal’s verdict. 

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