Foreign Affairs
Cannot return to the UK after joining Islamic State

The Supreme Court in the United Kingdom has declared that Shamima Begum cannot return to Britain in order to defend her right to British citizenship.

Shamima Begum left her country at the age of 15 to go to Syria and join Islamic State. She had left with two other girls in February 2015. She is presently in a camp in Syria.

In 2019 the British Home Affairs Ministry had revoked her citizenship on grounds of security. However, today Shamima Begum, who is now 21, would like to return to contest the Government’s decision.

In July the Court of Appeal had decreed she could return in order to appeal the Government’s decision, as she could not defend herself from Syria. The Government appealed this decision, stating that if she were allowed to return, she would pose a major risk to security.

The Supreme Court decreed that the Court of Appeal had erred when it stated that the right of Shamima Begum to defend herself wins over national security. For this reason, the Supreme Court decreed that the girl cannot return to the UK.