Boris Johnson has secretly backed a plan to bring British jihadi brides and their children back to the UK.
The prime minister and foreign secretary Dominic Raab have both supported the proposal, despite opposition from the Ministry of Defence and the Home Office.
Among the individuals mooted to come back to the country is ISIS ‘Matchmaker’ Tooba Gondal, 25, who travelled from her home in Walthamstow, east London, to Raqqa in 2015 and became one of its chief recruiters of female ISIS members.
The plans come as ministers admit the government’s stance on children of ISIS brides has ‘evolved’.
Boris Johnson has supported the proposal to bring jihadi brides and their children back to the UK
The secret proposals were revealed in correspondence seen by The Sunday Times.
It is believed that at least 60 – maybe more – children with a British origin are stranded in the former ISIS stronghold, along with their jihadi bride mothers.
A minister confirmed that Boris Johnson had given the order to bring home some of the children.
They said: ‘The PM made a decision and we will all work some way to sort it but it is very difficult given the security situation.’
But another Whitehall source insisted that the plans wouldn’t lead to all of the children being repatriated, with each child judged ‘on a case by case basis’.
The repatriated mothers could be put on trial for child abuse or neglect when they arrive in the UK.
This would remove the potentially tricky legal need to prove any of them had been engaged in jihadist activity.
The Ministry of Defence is against the plans, as it does not want responsibility for getting the children and their mothers back to Britain.
Tooba Gondal before she fled from her home in Walthamstow, east London, to Raqqa in Syria in 2015. She is one of the jihadi brides that could be brought back to the UK
Meanwhile, the Home Office opposed the proposal because it fears it will have to keep the jihadi brides under surveillance in the UK.
It comes as former cabinet minister David Davis slammed the government’s response to the issue of jihadi brides as ‘woefully inadequate’.
He also warned that their could be recruited as jihadists of the future if they are not brought back to the UK.
Accused ISIS recruiter Gondal is reportedly being held by Syrian rebels after escaping from a detention camp.
Foreign Office officials have reportedly been speaking with Gondal’s family in an attempt to establish the nationality of her children Ibrahim, three months, and Asiya, 18 months.
They were born in Syria to different fathers.
An email sent to Gondal’s east London family read: ‘Do you have any further detail to confirm that Ibrahim is British please?’
The family are believed to have provided the Foreign Office with an expired passport and birth certificate for Ibrahim’s British father, who was an Isis suicide bomber.
Police are thought to have questioned one of Gondal’s relatives in the UK last week about her alleged recruitment activities for Isis.
Foreign secretary Dominic Raab has also supported the proposal, despite opposition from the Ministry of Defence and the Home Office
During Gondal’s time matching Western women and girls to ISIS men, she was said to have who lured east London schoolgirl, Shamima Begum, to Syria.
In September Gondal, who married three times, said she wanted to ‘redeem myself’ and begged to be allowed come back to Britain to face justice.
The mother-of-two made a desperate plea to the British public in an open letter, in which she implored the government to allow her to return with her children.
Mohammed, Gondal’s father, confirmed she was banned from re-entering the UK after being served with a Home Office exclusion order last November.
Her son Ibrahim is entitled to British citizenship because his father – who was killed in a suicide bombing in Iraq – was from the UK.
Gondal was accused in the past of acting as a ‘matchmaker’ for the terrorist group and luring women to Syria to marry ISIS fighters. It is believed Bethnal Green teenager, Shamima Begum, was among her recruits.
In online rants before the fall of the so-called caliphate, Gondal called Britain a ‘filthy country’ and praised the 2015 terror attack on the Bataclan theatre in Paris.