The UK appears to have softened its policy on the offspring of British citizens who have gone to Syria to support ISIS
On Sunday the foreign secretary, Jeremy Hunt, appeared to indicate that the government have softened their stance towards the children of former British citizens following the death of Shamima Begum’s child, Jarrah.
In line with Sajid Javid’s previous comments, Hunt said on the Andrew Marr show that it was unsafe to send British officials to rescue Begum’s son from the refugee camp where Shamima was located, and that she chose to leave a free country to join a terrorist organisation.”
However, he conceded that both the Foreign Office and the Department for International Development were looking at ways to find and extract British children of other “Islamic State brides.”
This comes as the government has come under fire for their morally flawed, and possibly illegal handling of the Shamima Begum debacle.
Sajid Javid, in particular, has come under increasing fire as he has so far failed to break his silence on reports of the passing on Shamima Begum’s child. He has been called a moral coward by Lord Macdonald, the former director of public prosecutions of England and Wales. It has also been suggested that he intentionally took a hard stance against Shamima Begum to pander to right wing conservatives and bolster his chances of succeeding Theresa May as the next leader of the conservative party.
Other critics, such as Jess Phillips, Labour MP for Birmingham Yardley, said that if Sajid “wanted to act the tough guy, perhaps he could have started by being tough on crime here in the UK.” This comes as the knife epidemic in London continues, as the 17th victim of knife crime passed away last Thursday.
It has also recently come to light that Reema and Zara Iqbal, who like Shamima also travelled to Syria and become “Islamic State Brides,” also had their citizenship’s removed by former Home Secretary Amber Rudd. Both of these women are said to have five sons between them and have been widowed after their husbands died fighting for ISIS.
It remains to be seen whether the Government will legitimately look to help remove their children from Syria, in light of the backlash of their failure to handle the Shamima Begum’s debacle properly.