Shamima Begum to find out whether she has won British citizenship appeal

Shamima Begum to find out whether she has won citizenship appeal

Shamima Begum fled the UK at the age of 15 in 2015 for Syria with two other east London school girls to join to the Islamic State (IS).

Her British citizenship was revoked by then-Home Secretary Sajid Javid on national security grounds, shortly after she was discovered in a Syrian refugee camp, nine months pregnant, in 2019.

Since that decision, the now 23-year-old has been locked in a legal battle with the Government, recently challenging the Home Office at the Special Immigration Appeals Commission (SIAC) over the decision.

During a five-day trial last November, Ms Begum's lawyers said that the Home Office had a duty to investigate whether she was a victim of trafficking before stripping her of her British citizenship.

Mr Justice Jay is due to give his decision on Wednesday morning.

The specialist tribunal found that she was “recruited, transported, transferred, harboured and received in Syria for the purposes of ‘sexual exploitation’ and ‘marriage’ to an adult male”.

At a previous hearing in February 2020, SIAC ruled that the decision to remove her British citizenship was lawful as Ms Begum was “a citizen of Bangladesh by descent” at the time of the decision.

However, the Bangladeshi government made it clear that if Ms Begum were to go there she would face the death penalty.

Barristers for the Home Office defended the Government's decision, arguing that people trafficked to Syria and brainwashed could still pose a threat to national security.

They added that Ms Begum initially showed no signs of remorse when she emerged from IS territory.

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