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ISIS bride’s family urge Sajid Javid to allow them to bring her baby here

The family of Shamima Begum want to bring her newborn son to London and raise him pending her appeal to reinstate her British citizenship. 

Begum was banned from entering the country and stripped of her British passport by the Home Office on Monday, but her family’s lawyer plans to travel to the refugee camp in northern Syria where she is living to bring home five-day old Jerah.  

The family will explore all legal and practical options in order to gain custody of Jerah while Begum’s case goes through the courts, the Guardian reported. 

Home Secretary Sajid Javid previously stated – and legal experts have confirmed – that Jerah is still British despite his mother losing her citizenship, as he was born while she was still a legal national. 

Jihadi bride Shamima Begum has pleaded for mercy from politicians after being stripped of her UK citizenship - and has said she is 'willing to change', as her family say they are ready to challenge the decision to ban her from Britain in court

Jihadi bride Shamima Begum has pleaded for mercy from politicians after being stripped of her UK citizenship – and has said she is ‘willing to change’, as her family say they are ready to challenge the decision to ban her from Britain in court

And while theoretically he could also have his citizenship revoked, the government would need to show that he himself posed a threat.   

Begum, who was told on Tuesday of Mr Javid’s decision, had two other children with her Dutch Jihadist husband who both died of unknown illnesses under ISIS.  

The 19-year-old has pleaded for mercy from politicians and said she is ‘willing to change’ and wanted to return home with her baby son. 

The teenager, from Bethnal Green in East London, was 15 when she moved to join Islamic State’s self-proclaimed caliphate in Syria.   

The BBC reported this evening that Begum’s family would challenge Mr Javid’s decision and in a letter to the Home Secretary they say they are ‘sickened by the comments she made… but as her family they cannot simply abandon her.’

The letter, written by her sister Renu Begum on behalf of the family, said: ‘We wish to make clear, that along with the rest of the country, we are shocked and appalled at the vile comments she has made to the media in recent days. 

The letter, written by her sister Renu Begum on behalf of the family, said: 'We wish to make clear, that along with the rest of the country, we are shocked and appalled at the vile comments she has made to the media in recent days'

The letter, written by her sister Renu Begum on behalf of the family, said: ‘We wish to make clear, that along with the rest of the country, we are shocked and appalled at the vile comments she has made to the media in recent days’

‘These are not representative of British values, and my family entirely reject the comments she has made.’

But added: ‘Shamima’s status will be for the courts to decide in due course.’ 

Her family’s letter comes shortly after Begum, in an interview with Sky News, said she will not allow her son – who she claims is unwell – to travel to Britain without her.

She said: ‘I am struggling to get my supplies in right now. I don’t have a card because they lost my card, so I have to run around to take care of my son now, when I am sick. I am not getting my stuff.’ 

The remorseless 19-year-old, pictured here in an interview, is hanging her hopes on her captured husband Yago Riedijk being sent back to the Netherlands

The remorseless 19-year-old, pictured here in an interview, is hanging her hopes on her captured husband Yago Riedijk being sent back to the Netherlands

Shamima Begum and her friend fled to Syria by flying to Istanbul and getting a bus across Turkey to the ISIS capital, Raqqa. She moved to Mayadin with her jihadi husband Yago Riedijk but fled Baghuz when he was captured and is now in al-Hawl

Shamima Begum and her friend fled to Syria by flying to Istanbul and getting a bus across Turkey to the ISIS capital, Raqqa. She moved to Mayadin with her jihadi husband Yago Riedijk but fled Baghuz when he was captured and is now in al-Hawl

In a direct plea to British politicians, Shamima Begum said: ‘I would like them to re-evaluate my case with a bit more mercy in their heart, you know.’

And insisted: ‘I am willing to change.’

The Bangladeshi ministry of foreign affairs today insisted she would not be allowed into the country. 

When it was put to her that Bangladash had rejected an possibility of her entry, Begum said: ‘I don’t have anything there, another language, I have never even seen the place, I don’t know why people are offering that to me.’ 

Shamima Begum told Sky News today that she is 'willing to change' and pleaded with politicians to treat her case with 'a bit more mercy'

Shamima Begum told Sky News today that she is ‘willing to change’ and pleaded with politicians to treat her case with ‘a bit more mercy’

Shadow home secretary Diane Abbott said the Government ‘could not subvert the rule of law’ just because it is ‘not convenient’.

She told BBC Radio 4’s World At One: ‘You cannot strip people of their British nationality under international law if it will leave them stateless.

‘That’s the legal position and we are a country of laws.’  

It comes as peers demanded the 650-year-old Treason Act be updated to prosecute returning jihadists who have ‘betrayed’ Britain. 

Labour former security and counter-terrorism minister Lord West of Spithead said it was ‘appropriate that as a nation we show how repugnant this is and how appalling that sort of behaviour is’.

Lord West said that, as a minister, he found it difficult at times to take to court people who should have been prosecuted there.

Peers call for treason law update to tackle returning jihadists

Peers have called for the 650-year-old Treason Act to be updated to prosecute returning jihadists who have ‘betrayed’ Britain.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid came under pressure at question time after deciding to revoke Islamic State bride Shamima Begum’s British citizenship.

Labour former security Lord West of Spithead said it was ‘appropriate that as a nation we show how repugnant this is and how appalling that sort of behaviour is’.

Lord West said that, as a minister, he found it difficult at times to take to court people who should have been prosecuted there.

‘This seems to me a way it can be done,’ he added.

‘Update the treason law and show these people to be traitors, something that our nation really believes they are.’

Home Office minister Baroness Williams of Trafford said recent legislation had already given more powers to the courts to prosecute.

‘I agree the 1351 Treason Act is rather an old Act. Of course it was relatively recently updated in 1861.’

Lady Williams said she was not dismissing the demand.

The Home Secretary had said he would look at it and the Home Office kept all laws under review.

But she said prosecuting terrorists for treason risked ‘giving their actions a political status or glamour they do not deserve, rather than treating them merely as criminals’.

Independent crossbencher Lord Alton of Liverpool said no one wanted to ‘glamorise’ such actions but those who sought to justify the murder of British citizens in the bombing of the Manchester Arena in 2017 or took up arms against British forces and civilians had ‘betrayed this country, its people, its values and its laws’.

Lord Alton said it was time to provide a ‘solid legal basis’, rather than the 1351 Act, for prosecuting hundreds of returning jihadists, so those responsible for ‘heinous crimes’ could not expect to evade prosecution.

Lady Williams agreed that such people should not escape justice and insisted new powers given to the police might prevent some of ‘the terrible things that we have seen in recent months’.

Liberal Democrat Lord Paddick, a former Met Police deputy assistant commissioner, said yesterday the minister had implied that it was difficult to prosecute those involved with IS as the UK effectively had no extradition arrangements with Syria.

‘That is why the Government had to deprive people of their British citizenship,’ he said.

‘Many of these people want to return to the UK but the Government is preventing them from returning to face justice by depriving them of their citizenship.’

Lord Paddick asked: ‘Is the Government’s strategy confused or is it just me?’

To laughter, Lady Williams replied: ‘I think it might be you.

‘It is difficult to prosecute people in Syria.

‘We have no consular access in Syria.

‘People have been prosecuted when they come back to this country.

‘There are a number of different remedies available to the Government to try to bring people to justice.’

The Conservative chairman of the Commons Foreign Affairs Committee Tom Tugendhat said that the Treason Act of 1351 should be updated to deal with cases like Shamima Begum’s, with a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.

‘This seems to me a way it can be done,’ he added. ‘Update the treason law and show these people to be traitors, something that our nation really believes they are.’

Home Office minister Baroness Williams of Trafford said recent legislation had already given more powers to the courts to prosecute.

‘I agree the 1351 Treason Act is rather an old Act. Of course it was relatively recently updated in 1861.’

Lady Williams said she was not dismissing the demand.

The Home Secretary had said he would look at it and the Home Office kept all laws under review.

The Home Office believes that because Begum’s mother was born in Bangladesh, her daughter is entitled to dual citizenship.

This would theoretically mean that she would not be left stateless if she was stripped of British nationality, which is illegal under international law.

But the chances of the 19-year-old returning to Britain may have increased after the Bangladeshi ministry of foreign affairs accused Sajid Javid of ‘erroneously identifying’ Begum as a dual citizen – and insisted she will not be allowed into the country.

After learning her fate, ‘shocked’ Begum initially said she would seek citizenship in Holland – where her jihadi husband Yago Riedijk is from.

But the Dutch Government today also appeared to slam the door, telling the Sun Online that Begum does not have the residence permit required to live there.

The Netherlands also does not offer its help to returning Dutch jihadis, and can also strip its nationals of their citizenship if they are deemed a national security threat.

Shahrial Alam, state minister of foreign affairs in Bangladesh, said today there is ‘no question’ of her being allowed into the country and that she is not a citizen. 

Only last week, Britain’s MI6 chief said that UK nationals, even those who are members of terror organisations like ISIS, have a legal right to return home. 

Government guidance from 2017 states that the Home Secretary has the power to order the deprivation if it would be ‘conducive to the public good’, as long as they are not left without any citizenship. 

A Home Office spokesman said he could not discuss individual cases, but added: ‘We don’t leave people stateless.’

Mr Javid on Monday told the House of Commons: ‘The powers available to me include banning non-British people from this country and stripping dangerous dual nationals of their British citizenship.’ 

More than 100 people have already been deprived in this way. 

Liberal Democrat home affairs spokesman Sir Ed Davey accused Mr Javid of ‘an abdication of responsibility’ by ‘palming off’ Begum on to another country. 

‘The UK has more than enough terrorism laws to prosecute Shamima Begum here,’ he said.

Meanwhile Conservative chair of the Commons Education Committee, Robert Halfon, who had spoken out against allowing Begum to return, said in a tweet that Mr Javid had made ‘absolutely the right decision’. 

The move comes after Begum returned to the public eye when she was found heavily pregnant living in a refugee camp in northern Syria.

She gave birth to a boy over the weekend, and made pleas to be accepted back in the UK. However opponents criticised her lack of apparent remorse for joining ISIS.

On Tuesday, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said the 19-year-old could expect to be ‘spoken to’ if she comes back to Britain.

The initial police stance when Ms Begum left the UK in 2015 was that she may be treated as a victim of grooming, but the Scotland Yard chief said: ‘We’re a long way down the road since then.’

Begum's baby son Jerah is entitled to British citizenship - but could try to argue he is Dutch because of the nationality of its jihadi father Yago Riedijk

Begum’s baby son Jerah is entitled to British citizenship – but could try to argue he is Dutch because of the nationality of its jihadi father Yago Riedijk

She added: ‘If she does, under whatever circumstances, 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.

Removing schoolgirl’s citizenship ‘could be exploited by radicals’

Radical Islamists could exploit unease caused by the decision to strip Shamima Begum of her British citizenship, the Government’s chief adviser on countering extremism has warned.

Home Secretary Sajid Javid made the move after the teenager, who fled London aged 15 to join the so-called Islamic State caliphate in Syria, said she wanted to return to the UK with her newborn son.

Independent adviser Sara Khan cautioned on Thursday that the Government must acknowledge the anxiety caused by the decision, with extremists being eager to ‘exploit alienation and grievance’.

‘While it is for courts to test the legality of decisions such as deprivation of citizenship, we have to also ask how measures such as this impact wider work on countering extremism,’ she said.

‘The Government has to recognise the unease felt by a wide range of people about decisions of this kind, not least those from minority communities with dual nationality.

‘It has to build trust in its approach, because Islamist extremists will exploit alienation and grievance to turn people against their country.’

‘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.’ 

On Monday, in an interview with the BBC, Ms Begum compared the Manchester Arena bombing to military strikes on Isis strongholds, calling the terror attack ‘retaliation’.

There are currently plans to change the law to make travelling to certain terror hotspots a criminal offence, but this would not apply retrospectively to Ms Begum.

Around 425 suspected jihadi fighters are thought to have returned to the UK from Syria so far.

Before yesterday’s decision, the Home Secretary had already hinted that he would block Begum from returning to the UK.

Earlier this week ,Mr Javid told MPs that no British troops would be used to rescue any Britons who travelled to Syria to support terrorism.  

He said more than 900 people went to Syria or Iraq, adding: ‘Whatever role they took in the so-called caliphate, they all supported a terrorist organisation and in doing so they have shown they hate our country and the values we stand for.’

He went on: ‘Now this so-called caliphate is crumbling, some of them want to return and I have been very clear where I can and where any threat remains I will not hesitate to prevent this.

‘The powers available to me include banning non-British people from this country and stripping dangerous dual nationals of their British citizenship.’

Shamima Begum, 19 (pictured before she left the country four years ago) is pleading with the government to allow her back into Britain 

Shamima Begum, 19 (pictured before she left the country four years ago) is pleading with the government to allow her back into Britain 

This is the moment ISIS bride Shamima Begum, pictured holding her baby son, learned that Sajid Javid has moved to revoke her British citizenship to stop her getting back to the UK

This is the moment ISIS bride Shamima Begum, pictured holding her baby son, learned that Sajid Javid has moved to revoke her British citizenship to stop her getting back to the UK

 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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