• Tuesday, Sep 28, 2021
  • Last Update : 08:07 pm

UK Supreme Court rejects Shamima Begum's legal bid to return

  • Published at 09:15 am February 26th, 2021
Web-Shamima-Begum-IS
File Photo: Renu Begum, sister of teenage British-Bangladeshi girl Shamima Begum, holds a photo of her sister as she makes an appeal for her to return home at Scotland Yard, in London, Britain February 22, 2015 Reuters

She cannot return to the UK to pursue an appeal against the removal of her British citizenship

Britain's highest court on Friday rejected a bid by a woman who was stripped of her UK citizenship for joining the Islamic State group to return to challenge the decision.

Five judges at the Supreme Court gave a unanimous decision in the case of Shamima Begum, whose legal battles have come to be seen as a test of how countries treat nationals who joined the jihadists.

"Ms Begum's appeal against the leave to enter decision is dismissed," the head of the Supreme Court, judge Robert Reed, said in a written judgment.

The judges said the right to a fair hearing did not override other considerations such as the safety of the public.

"The appropriate response to the problem in the present case is for the deprivation appeal to be stayed until Ms Begum is in a position to play an effective part in it without the safety of the public being compromised," they added.

"That is not a perfect solution, as it is not known how long it may be before that is possible. But there is no perfect solution to a dilemma of the present kind."

Now 21, Begum left her home in east London at the age of 15 to travel to Syria with two school friends and married an IS fighter.

In 2019 she told The Times newspaper that she did not regret travelling to Syria and had not been "fazed" by seeing a severed head dumped in a bin. 

Britain revoked her citizenship in 2019 on national security grounds amid an outcry led by right-wing newspapers.

Polarizing case

Begum is being held in a camp in poor conditions, while her husband is reportedly in jail in Syria, and her three children have died.

She appealed to be allowed back into the UK so that she can legally challenge her loss of citizenship.

She argued that the decision was unlawful as it has made her stateless and exposed her to the risk of death or inhuman and degrading treatment.

Begum is of Bangladeshi heritage, but the country's foreign minister has said he will not consider granting her citizenship.

The Court of Appeal ruled in July last year that Begum needed to come back to mount a fair and effective appeal.

But the interior ministry in turn appealed against this decision, insisting she remained "aligned" with the proscribed terrorist organization.

A government lawyer told the Supreme Court in November her return would create "an increased risk of terrorism."

Her legal team argued that this did not override the need for a fair hearing.

Rights groups have argued human rights principles are at stake and Begum should answer for any crimes in her home country.

The tabloid newspaper The Sun has called her a "vile fanatic" who has "no place on our soil."

Begum claims she married a Dutch convert soon after arriving in IS-held territory. She was discovered, nine months pregnant, in a Syrian refugee camp in February 2019.

Her new-born baby died soon after she gave birth. Her two other children also died in infancy under IS rule.


59
Facebook 57
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail