FORMER Jihadi bride Shamima Begum has reportedly been granted legal aid to fight the UK government’s decision to remove her British citizenship.
The 19-year-old is currently living in a Syrian refugee camp but is fighting to come back to the UK.
In a move slammed as “disgusting” and “ridiculous” by MPs and activists, lawyers successfully argued for cash from the taxpayer to fund Begum’s case.
Taxpayers could face a legal bill of hundreds of thousands of pounds as the former London schoolgirl appeals against losing her citizenship.
Lawyers will argue that the taking away ex-ISIS bride Begum’s citizenship by Home Secretary Sajid Javid was unfair.
Many reacted furiously by the decision to reward aid from the Legal Aid Agency (LAA), on the same day it was alleged Begum stitched suicide bombers into explosive vests.
“It’s extraordinary, it’s totally wrong and it shows just how bad the legal aid system is”
It was also claimed the schoolgirl from Bethnal Green, east London had held a Kalashnikov and served in Islamic State’s “morality police” as an enforcer.
Although lawyers haven’t been able to speak to Begum at the refugee camp, the Mail Online has reported the LAA apparently accepted her family can start an appeal and apply for funding on her behalf.
Mark Tipper, whose brother, Trooper Simon Tipper, 19, was killed in the Hyde Park bombing in 1982, said he was “disgusted” by the decision.
He was refused funding to pursue IRA terrorist John Downey.
“It’s absolutely disgusting,” Tipper told Mail Online.
“You have got someone who has turned their back on their country and supports a terrorist group, then wants to come back and what does the Legal Aid Agency do?
“Gives her money to fund that fight.”
He went on: “It’s extraordinary, it’s totally wrong and it shows just how bad the legal aid system is.”
Tory MP Philip Davies said: “How Begum has been allowed to sponge off taxpayers’ money to get back into a country she hates is absolutely ridiculous.”
Tasnime Akunjee, who has represented Begum’s family since 2015, confirmed an application was made for legal aid on March 19, and it had been granted.
He said: “I represent the family who initially brought the case on behalf of Shemima Begum, but the family are not entitled to legal aid — the legal aid is for Shamim alone.”
British law states even though Begum isn’t a British citizen anymore, she can apply for legal aid if the case is held in a British court and she has no means to pay.
Begum left her family to join ISIS in February 2015.
She lived in the former Jihadi stronghold of Raqqa, Syria, and married a Dutch IS fighter called Yago Riedijk.
Earlier this year, she appeared at a refugee camp, saying she wanted to come home and pleading to be allowed back
A spokesman at The Home Office said: “We do not comment on individual cases, but any decisions to deprive individuals of their citizenship are based on all available evidence and not taken lightly.”
Last night, a spokesman for the LAA said: “We are unable to comment on individual cases.
“Anybody applying for legal aid in a Special Immigration Appeal Commission is subject to strict eligibility tests.”