Let us raise our daughter’s baby, say family of Bethnal Green Jihadi bride Shamima Begum

Let us raise our daughter's baby, say family of Bethnal Green Jihadi bride Shamima Begum

Her family are of Bangladeshi origin, but Shamima – who is nine months pregnant – was raised and schooled in London until falling under the spell of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil). Once in Syria she was married off to Yago Riedijk, 26, a Muslim convert from the Netherlands and bore him two children, who both died while babies.

She said in an interview with The Times on Saturday: “What do you think will happen to my child? Because I don’t want it to be taken away from me, or at least if it is, to be given to my family.”

Mr Rahman, who works as an electrician, said: “I can understand why many people in Britain do not want Shamima to be allowed back into the country after what she has done. I know people are scared about what she might do if she came back, if she might still be dangerous, but she went as a 15-year-old and I don’t know how a 15-year-old can make make such a decision with any responsibility. 

“She was a minor when she left and she has surely been brainwashed when she was out there. If there’s any possibility of a good outcome being achieved, by helping her to return and go through some sort of rehabilitation, it should be tried.”

The 36-year-old family man, who lives in a house in east London previously occupied by Shamima’s sister Renu, added: “They want to be reunited as a family again. She is their daughter. If she is remorseful and can be set back on the right path then perhaps we can be compassionate as a society and think the best of people.

“Every family wants to think the best of their children and their close ones but they had no idea she was being led down the path she was otherwise they would have tried to stop her. They think the best of their daughter and whatever difficulties she comes back with they believe they can fix.”

Mr Rahman said Shamima’s decision to leave Britain and travel to Syria in February 2015, aged just 15, with her two friends from Bethnal Green Academy, Kadiza Sultana, 16, and Amira Abase, 15, had stunned her family, who had always considered themselves hard working people trying to do their best for their children.

“I first met her when she was a little girl, just 11, and she was just a normal little girl. When I heard that she had left the country to travel to Syria it was completely out of the blue, both for me and her family. There is no way they would have let her do that if they had known she was planning to leave like that.”

Tasnime Akunjee, solicitor for the three families of the Bethnal Green girls with Mayfair law firm Farooq Bajwa & Co, yesterday questioned whether the Home Secretary had the power to prevent Shamima returning to Britain.

Writing on Twitter he said: “Sajid Javid the home secretary, does he understand UK laws?”

Earlier Mr Akunjee stated: “It looks as if Mr Javid is trying to oppose that. I don’t believe he has the legal grounds or tools to stop her coming back.”

Source link