Arab world

School Now Linked To 8 Girls Over IS In Syria



Four schoolgirls banned last week from leaving the UK over fears they would travel to Syria are from the same London school as four other girls who have already fled to join Islamic State, it has been revealed.

A judge has decided that it can now be made public that all eight teenagers were pupils at Bethnal Green Academy in east London.

In February, Kadiza Sultana, 16, Shamima Begum, 15, and Amira Abase, 15, left their east London homes for Syria, two months after a fellow pupil is thought to have left to join IS there.

But police had also raised concerns about four other girls at the school.

Last week, Mr Justice Hayden made the girls – aged 15 and 16 – wards of the court, preventing them from leaving the country without a judge’s permission.

He made the move after social services at Tower Hamlets Council made an application to the Family Division of the High Court in London.

Social workers told the judge the girls might flee to areas controlled by the Islamic State and counter terrorism specialists at the Metropolitan Police also gave evidence during the week-long hearing.

The judge changed his order banning identification of the girls after the press appealed that identifying the school would be in the public interest.

The Press Association news agency argued that parents in the area considering schools for their children had a right to know.

:: Earlier this month Mr Justice Hayden, who said that sometimes the law had to intervene to protect young people from themselves, barred a 16-year-old boy from travelling abroad by making him a ward of the court.

The boy’s two elder brothers had already been killed fighting for militants in Syria.

He also banned identification of this youngster but revealed that the local authority which had applied to have him made a ward of the court was Brighton and Hove City Council.


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