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HomeNewsShamima Begum ‘will exploit loophole in government system' to regain citizenship

Shamima Begum ‘will exploit loophole in government system' to regain citizenship

The Court of Appeal has been told that Shamima Begum will ‘exploit any error or loophole’ in order to regain her citizenship.

The court heard that this is because she allegedly knows that the government will not be able to take it away for a second time.

Speaking to the court, Sir James Eadie KC said Ms Begum knows she won’t have her citizenship removed again because this would make her stateless.

One of the Home Office’s main arguments when it stripped Ms Begum of her British citizenship in 2019 was that she was a dual citizen because her parents had Bangladeshi citizenship.

However, the Telegraph reported that this has changed now that Ms Begum is over the age of 21.

Sir James told the court: “The position as we understand it now is that Begum, now past the age of 21, is no longer a dual citizen.

“So when it comes to the original decision, for the opposition, any error will do because they know in any future decision statelessness will rear its head, which will perhaps be a game-changer.”

Furthermore, the court was told there were claims that the then Home Secretary Sajid Javid should have investigated whether Ms Begum was failed by the state.

Ms Begum was just 15 when she travelled from London to Islamic State-controlled territory in 2015.

Ms Begum’s lawyers say that Mr Javid’s failure to protect Ms Begum was a breach of Article Four of the European Convention on Human Rights. As a result, this allegedly rendered his decision to revoke her citizenship invalid.

However, the lawyers for the Home Office said Mr Javid’s duty to protect the British public overrode the risk Ms Begum may have been a victim of trafficking.

Sir James said: “To deprive Shamima Begum of British citizenship was conducive to the public good because it was considered she presented a risk to national security.”

The court was told that radicalised women and children can pose a “real and tangible” risk to national security.

Sir James said there is a “particular threat posed by women who had gone out and aligned through a process of radicalisation and dehumanisation”.

He added: “The fact that someone has been radicalised is not inconsistent with the fact they may pose a national security risk – and this applies as much to women and children as to male adults.”

Addressing Ms Begum’s appeal against the decision of the UK government, Sir James said that even if it was proved Ms Begum had been trafficked, this would not mean she didn’t pose a threat to the UK.

He explained: “There was still a pressing need to consider whether they [Miss Begum and her two friends] posed a threat. The fact of trafficking is not inconsistent with posing a possibly very serious national security risk.

“It is entirely possible for someone to have been exploited or trafficked by nasty people or similar and yet still be a danger to the public.

“She knew what she was doing and went into it with her eyes open and stayed right until the end.”

A decision by the court is expected later.



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