The UK should 'take responsibility' for Shamima Begum, argues Tory MP

26 February 2021, 15:40

Shamima Begum should be brought back to the UK and have her human rights respected, Tory MP Andrew Mitchell has told LBC.
Shamima Begum should be brought back to the UK and have her human rights respected, Tory MP Andrew Mitchell has told LBC. Picture: PA

By Sam Sholli

Shamima Begum should be brought back to the UK and have her human rights respected, Tory MP Andrew Mitchell has told LBC.

Mr Mitchell made his case on LBC after the Supreme Court ruling that Shamima Begum is not allowed to return to the UK to pursue an appeal against the removal of her British citizenship.

Shamima Begum, now 21, was one of three East London schoolgirls who travelled to Syria to join ISIS in February 2015 when she was 15 years old.

Her British citizenship was revoked on national security grounds by then Home Secretary Sajid Javid shortly after she was found, nine months pregnant, in a Syrian refugee camp in February 2019.

James O'Brien gives his take on Shamima Begum citizenship case

The former International Development Secretary told LBC's Shelagh Fogarty that the case of Shamima Begum was an "uncomfortable" one.

However, he argued: "The underpinning of society means that some very bad people have human rights and they have to be respected, as well as the rest of us."

Mr Mitchell added: "The much larger point, that I and others have been making, is that we need to take responsibility for those people who are or were British citizens who are out in these camps in Syria.

Ex MI6 boss: Shamima Begum should face 'tough justice' in the UK

"Because if they are left in ungoverned space swilling around, they have the capability if they're bad people to do us great damage because they will be there in ungoverned space and able to roam free.

"And this is not just people like me who are saying this. The Americans have expressed frustration that Britain won't take back their people caught there in Syria.

"Most other countries have done so. The Americans offered to help us to get them back. And if they have committed crimes, they should be put before courts and face justice."

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