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The treatment of Shamima Begum and Asma Al-Assad reveals Britain’s double standards

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The British government’s decision to strip Daesh runaway Shamima Begum of her citizenship not only exposes the country’s double standards, but also reveals that the United Kingdom’s notorious class system and institutional racism are both as entrenched as ever. The treatment of the teenager from East London is very different to that of Asma Al-Assad, yet both women were born and educated in London, and both are married to war criminals who’ve carried out atrocities on the ground in Syria, although only one has used chemical weapons on women and children. Here’s a clue: it wasn’t Begum’s husband.

Despite Prime Minister Theresa May saying that she had evidence that Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad was behind the chemical weapon attack on the city of Douma on 7 April last year, his upper middle class, London-born wife Asma still enjoys her British citizenship. During a press conference last April, the PM accused Assad of war crimes, citing several sources, and said that a barrel bomb was used to deliver the chemicals from a helicopter. “The [Syrian] opposition does not operate helicopters or use barrel bombs,” she explained. “And reliable intelligence indicates that Syrian military officials co-ordinated what appears to be the use of chlorine in Douma.”

May indicated that there was other intelligence-based evidence which she was unable to share with the public. America and France issued similar statements. The British response was a series of air strikes against Assad’s chemical weapons facilities carried out without UN approval.

READ: British teen who joined Daesh to have citizenship revoked

Sajid Javid MP backed the strikes. “A necessary and proportionate response that will deter & degrade Syrian chemical weapons capability,” he tweeted on 14 April. Within 16 days his loyal cheerleading was rewarded when he was appointed Home........

© Middle East Monitor