Pregnant British teen who joined ISIS can return but will face investigation, says UK minister

Nineteen-year old Shamima Begum has already lost two children. The UK security minister says he feels sorry for the unborn child. 

By World Israel News staff

A British woman who joined ISIS in Syria “has the right” to return to the U.K. despite admitting her involvement with the group, Security Minister Ben Wallace said Thursday.

Shamima Begum, who was 15 when she left east London in 2015 with two other schoolgirls on a flight to Turkey to join the terrorist organization, said she had no regrets.

“I don’t regret coming here,” she told The Times: “I’m not the same silly little 15-year-old schoolgirl who ran away from Bethnal Green four years ago.”

During the recent interview, Begum, who is now 19 years old and nine-months pregnant, revealed that she wants to return home to the U.K. for the sake of the baby, fearing it could die in the camp where she has been living.

“I can’t comment on this case exactly for legal reasons,” Wallace said on ITV. “[But] fundamentally it depends on her status as [a] British citizen, whether or not she has a passport.”

Begum is the only known survivor of the three friends, and her own two children died of disease and malnutrition before the age of one. With her third baby now due imminently and her jihadi husband Yago Riedijk captured, she has decided to quit ISIS and now wants to “live quietly” back in the U.K. and ensure that her baby survives.

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“If she is a British citizen, she has rights,” said the security minister.

“But don’t be surprised by what reception you have when you get back. when it comes to investigation and law enforcement,” he said, adding that “in other cases where people have been detained and brought back under control, back to the U.K., they can expect to be investigated, interviewed, and prosecuted if evidence against them is shown. It can take a long time.”

The British minister explained that he felt badly for the unborn child:  “I feel sympathy for children born out there, they didn’t have a choice, it wasn’t their fault, some of them have been subjected to horrendous things.”

“We will look after the children as the UK government, we will do what we can. [But] if the parents have been complicit in terrorism, we will prosecute them,” said Wallace.