Shamima Begum should not be allowed to return to the UK to pursue an appeal against the removal of her British citizenship, the Supreme Court has ruled.
Begum was 15 when she and two other east London schoolgirls travelled to Syria to join the so-called Islamic State group (IS) in February 2015.
Her British citizenship was revoked on national security grounds shortly after she was found, nine months pregnant, in a Syrian refugee camp in February 2019.
Begum, now 21, challenged the Home Office’s decision to remove her British citizenship and wanted to be allowed to return to the UK to pursue her appeal.
The Court of Appeal ruled in July ‘the only way in which she can have a fair and effective appeal is to be permitted to come into the UK to pursue her appeal’.
The Home Office challenged that decision at the Supreme Court in November, arguing allowing her to return to the UK ‘would create significant national security risks’ and expose the public to ‘an increased risk of terrorism’.
Today, the UK’s highest court ruled Begum should not be granted leave to enter the UK to pursue her appeal against the deprivation of her British citizenship.
Announcing the decision, Lord Reed said: ‘The Supreme Court unanimously allows all of the Home Secretary’s appeals and dismisses Ms Begum’s cross-appeal.’
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