ISIS bride, 34, detained in refugee camp complains 'it is not fair' she can't return to UK

Nicole Jack with three daughters, photo courtesy of BBC News
Nicole Jack with three daughters, photo courtesy of BBC News
Samantha Haynes

By Samantha Haynes

Published: 08/10/2021

- 12:32

Updated: 14/02/2023

- 11:34

ISIS bride Nicole Jack begs to return to UK after taking children to Syria with jihadi husband

Nicole Jack, who joined ISIS with her husband and travelled in Syria in 2015, has pleaded with the UK to allow her to return with her daughters aged seven, nine and 12.

Nicole Jack and her three children are being detained at Camp Roj in Syria. The children were taken from their home in London by Nicole Jack and her first husband, Hussein Ali, to join the so-called Islamic State (IS) group in 2015.

The ISIS bride, 34, is being held at the same camp as Shamima Begum. Shamima Begum is also from London and insists that she is not a security threat to Britain. Sajid Javid cancelled her UK on security grounds in 2019, meaning that she will not be allowed back into the UK.

Ms Jack told the BBC that she does not understand how she can be viewed as a security risk for going to Syria, saying the decision to travel there was about her family being together.

Asked why she had taken her children – now aged between seven and 12 – to live in Islamic State territory, she told Today: “I don’t think, even if I explained it, everyone would understand. But from my point of view, where I stand, firstly, it was about my family being together.

“And honestly, secondly, what may have happened, we’ve never been witness to it, my children and I, honestly, you know, I haven’t seen a beheading in my life.”

Asked if she could ever see herself sending her children to the UK without her, she said: “To be honest, for us as a family we cope together. I know for sure if my kids were separated from me they will not be in a stable situation, because we are a unit.”

When it was suggested to her that there is a concern that women like her are a security risk, she said: “To be honest, from that point of view also, I don’t understand it. I’ll be honest, I really never understood where people would say someone who went to Syria was a security risk, because they actually left the country.

“They didn’t cause harm to a country being inside of it without doing something.”

She told the BBC the Government should “open up a dialogue” and “at least try to understand why or what was the situation”, rather than “having just a closed mind”.

A Government spokesman said: “Our priority is to ensure the safety and security of the UK. Those who remain in Syria include dangerous individuals who chose to stay to fight or otherwise support a group that committed atrocious crimes including butchering and beheading innocent civilians.

“It is important that we do not make judgments about the national security risk someone poses based on their gender or age.”

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