ISIS bride Shamima Begum stripped of British citizenship after showing no remorse for fleeing to Syria.
ISIS bride Shamima Begum stripped of British citizenship after showing no remorse for fleeing to Syria.

UK's shock decision on ‘IS bride’

ISLAMIC State bride Shamima Begum has been stripped of her British citizenship after showing no remorse for joining up with the terror group.

An official Home Office letter breaking the shock news was delivered to the teen's "disappointed" family earlier today, The Sun reported.

"Please find enclosed papers that relate to a decision taken by the Home Secretary, to deprive your daughter, Shamima Begum, of her British citizenship," the letter read.

"In light of the circumstances of your daughter, the notice of the Home Secretary's decision has been served of file today (19th February), and the order removing her British citizenship has subsequently been made."

The letter - obtained by ITV News - went on to urge the Begum family to make their daughter aware of the decision while adding she had the right to appeal.

The schoolgirl's family have said they are "disappointed" by the Home Office's decision, said their lawyer Tasnime Akunjee.

"We are considering all legal avenues to challenge this decision," he tweeted.

The Home Office has declined to comment further on the letter.

Begum's dual nationality - as both her parents are of Bangladeshi - reportedly cleared the way for today's decision.

If she didn't have any other nationality than British she would have been left "stateless".

Shamima made it clear she is ready to return to the UK after being found in a refugee camp. Source: Anthony Loyd/The Times
Shamima made it clear she is ready to return to the UK after being found in a refugee camp. Source: Anthony Loyd/The Times

ARREST THREAT

It was reported that Begum could be questioned and arrested if she returned to the UK.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said the teenager would be spoken to by counter-terror officers if she were to return to the UK from Syria.

"If she does … arrive at our borders somebody in her type of circumstances could expect, of course, to be spoken to and if there is the appropriate necessity, to be potentially arrested and certainly investigated," she said.

"If that results in sufficient evidence for a prosecution then it will result in sufficient evidence for a prosecution.

"The officers will deal with whatever they are confronted with."

The former British schoolgirl fled from her home in Bethnal Green, East London, as a 15-year-old to join Islamic State in 2015.

She has this week pleaded to be allowed to return home after giving birth to a baby boy.

"I actually do support some British values and I am willing to go back to the UK and settle back again and rehabilitate and that stuff," Ms Begum said in a BBC interview.

"The poster girl thing was not my choice," she added, of how she was used within the terrorist group as a tool for recruitment.

Shamima Begum gave birth to a boy over the weekend.
Shamima Begum gave birth to a boy over the weekend.

ARENA OUTRAGE

However she also said the murder of 22 music fans in the Manchester Arena suicide bombing was "fair justification" for air raids on IS in Syria.

Showing no remorse, the 19-year-old dismissed the atrocity at the 2017 Ariana Grande concert as "retaliation".

She left London in February 2015 with two school friends to follow another classmate to Syria.

She said one friend, Kadiza Sultana, had died in an air strike but the other Bethnal Green girls, Amira Abase and Sharmeena Begum, had stayed with IS in Baghuz.

She said she feared she will never see her husband, the Dutch jihadist Yago Riedijk again, whom she still loved "very much".

Riedijk, 26, a convert to Islam who grew up in a middle-class family home in Arnhem, is suspected by police of being involved in a terrorist plot in the Netherlands.

He was convicted in his absence last year of membership of a terrorist group.

WHY AND HOW WAS SHAMIMA BEGUM STRIPPED OF HER BRITISH CITIZENSHIP?

The Home Secretary's power to deprive someone of their British citizenship is covered by Section 40 British Nationality Act 1981.

It states the Home Sec must be satisfied "it would be conducive to the public good to deprive person of his or her British nationality".

The official regulations add "that s/he would not become stateless as a result of the deprivation".

Home Office guidance states that "Conduciveness to the Public Good" means "depriving in the public interest on the grounds of involvement in terrorism, espionage, serious organised crime, war crimes or unacceptable behaviours".

If Shamima Begum decides to appeal the decision to impose deprivation of citizenship order she has 28 days to appeal to the Special Immigration Appeals Commission.

This story was originally published in The Sun and is reprinted with permission.

Cressida Dick, Metropolitan Police Commissioner, warned Begum will be arrested if she returns to the UK.
Cressida Dick, Metropolitan Police Commissioner, warned Begum will be arrested if she returns to the UK.
Begum's family received a letter from the British home office today.
Begum's family received a letter from the British home office today.


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