Shamima Begum loses bid to regain British citizenship

Shamima Begum loses bid to regain British citizenship

Ms Begum was 15 years outdated when she travelled from Bethnal Green, east London, by way of Turkey and into territory managed by the so-called Islamic State (IS).

Her British citizenship was revoked shortly after she was discovered, 9 months pregnant, in a Syrian refugee camp in February 2019.

Ms Begum, now 23, introduced a problem towards the Home Office over this determination on the Special Immigration Appeals Commission (SIAC), a specialist tribunal which hears challenges to selections to take away somebody’s British citizenship on nationwide safety grounds.

Following a five-day listening to in November, the tribunal dismissed her problem on Wednesday.

Giving the choice of the fee, Mr Justice Jay mentioned that the tribunal discovered that there was a “credible suspicion” Ms Begum had been trafficked to Syria for sexual exploitation, “to which, as a toddler, she couldn’t give a legitimate consent”.

“In the fee’s opinion, there’s a credible suspicion that Ms Begum was recruited, transferred after which harboured for the aim of sexual exploitation,” he continued within the ruling.

Kadiza Sultana, Shamima Begum and Amira Abase pictured as they fled to Syria (Metropolitan Police/PA)

However, the specialist tribunal dominated {that a} discovering that Ms Begum had been trafficked didn’t forestall the then-home secretary from eradicating her citizenship.

Mr Justice Jay additionally mentioned in a abstract of the fee’s determination that the existence of this suspicion was “inadequate” for her to succeed on her arguments that the deprivation of her British citizenship did not respect her human rights, including that given she was now in Syria, the Home Secretary was not compelled to facilitate her return nor stopped from utilizing “deprivation powers”.

He continued in a 76-page public judgment: “This Secretary of State … maintains that nationwide safety is a weighty issue and that it will take a really sturdy countervailing case to outweigh it.

“Reasonable individuals will profoundly disagree with the Secretary of State, however that raises wider societal and political questions which it isn’t the function of this fee to handle.”

During the listening to, Ms Begum’s attorneys beforehand argued that her faculty and the police each “missed alternatives” to stop her journey to Syria.

In his ruling, Mr Justice Jay mentioned: “The police, the varsity, the native authority, the Home Office and the Security Services have been blamed in numerous methods.

“In our view, placing the matter at its very lowest, there may be an debatable case of failing to take cheap preventative measures directed towards the police, the varsity and the native authority.

“The case towards the Home Office is much less clear-cut; the case towards the Security Services seems skinny.”

NHS digital reforms

Former house secretary Sajid Javid welcomed the choice (Yui Mok/PA)

Wednesday’s determination has been welcomed by the Home Office and former house secretary Sajid Javid.

A division spokesperson mentioned: “We are happy that the courtroom has present in favour of the Government’s place on this case.

“The Government’s precedence stays sustaining the protection and safety of the UK and we’ll robustly defend any determination made in doing so.”

Mr Javid, who made the choice to strip Ms Begum of her British citizenship, mentioned: “I welcome in the present day’s courtroom ruling, which has once more upheld my determination to take away a person’s citizenship on nationwide safety grounds.

“This is a fancy case however house secretaries ought to have the ability to stop anybody coming into our nation who’s assessed to pose a risk to it.”


Amnesty International has criticised the ruling.

Steve Valdez-Symonds, the charity’s UK refugee and migrant rights director, mentioned: “This is a really disappointing determination.”

He continued: “The energy to banish a citizen like this merely shouldn’t exist within the fashionable world, not least after we’re speaking about an individual who was severely exploited as a toddler.

“Just as different nations have finished, the UK ought to be serving to any of its residents stranded in Syria – together with by aiding of their protected return to the UK, whether or not or not meaning going through potential legal investigation or prosecution.”

Lawyers appearing on behalf of Ms Begum mentioned Wednesday’s ruling has left “no safety for a British youngster trafficked out of the UK”.

In an announcement Gareth Pierce and Daniel Furner, from Birnberg Pierce Solicitors, mentioned: “The consequence is that there’s now no safety for a British youngster trafficked out of the UK if the house secretary invokes nationwide safety.

“Regrettably, it is a misplaced alternative to place into reverse a profound mistake and a unbroken injustice.

“Ms Begum stays in illegal, arbitrary and indefinite detention with out trial in a Syrian camp. Every potential avenue to problem this determination can be urgently pursued.”



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