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UK top court says IS schoolgirl can't return

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The UK’s top court has unanimously ruled that a British-born woman who went to Syria as a schoolgirl to join Islamic State should not be allowed to return.

The Supreme Court said on Friday (February 26) Shamima Begum cannot come back to Britain to challenge the government taking away her citizenship because she poses a security risk.

She left London in 2015 when she was 15 years old and went to Syria via Turkey with two school friends, where she married an IS fighter.

Since that time she gave birth to three children, all of them died.

Now aged 21, Begum is being held in a detention camp in Syria.

President of the UK Supreme Court Robert Reed said on Friday "The right to a fair hearing does not trump all other considerations, such as the safety of the public".

It was stated that Begum can still pursue her appeal against the revoking of her citizenship, but she cannot do that in Britain.

This decision overturns a ruling made by the Court of Appeal last year saying she could only have a fair appeal if she were allowed back to the UK.

The case has provoked heated debate in Britain, pitting those who say she gave up her right to citizenship by traveling to join IS against those, including Human Rights groups who argue she should not be left stateless but rather face trial in Britain.