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The New Arab

British-Canadian IS suspect 'Jihadi Jack' says he wants return to UK

Jack Letts was captured by Kurdish forces while fleeing from Raqqa [ITV News]

Date of publication: 23 February, 2019

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A British man suspected of joining the Islamic State group in Syria has said that he wishes to return to the UK in a newly-released television interview.


A second British national who is suspected of joining the Islamic State group in Syria has said he wants to return to the United Kingdom from a Kurdish prison where he has been held for two years.

Twenty-three-year-old Jack Letts, dubbed "Jihadi Jack" by the British media, travelled to Syria in 2014 and was later captured by Kurdish YPG forces while fleeing from Raqqa.

"I feel British, I am British. If the UK accepted me, I would go back to the UK, but I don’t think that’s going to happen." Letts said in an interview with British broadcaster ITV News on Friday.

"I miss people mostly, I miss my mum. Five years I haven't seen my mum, two years I haven't spoken to my mum. I miss pasties. And Doctor Who," he added.

The interview follows widespread attention on the case of 19-year-old Briton Shamima Begum, who left the UK aged 15 to live under the IS group. UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid controversy recently made the controversial move of serving Begum's family with a notice saying that the teenager would be stripped of her UK citizenship.

International law prevents a government from rendering a person stateless, but Britain reportedly believes that Begum also has Bangladeshi citizenship due to her parents, although she was born in Britain.

Bangladesh, meanwhile, has said there was "no question" of her being allowed to enter, and there is legal argument about whether simply having Bangaldeshi parents bestows citizenship.

Begum have said they will challenge the British government's decision to revoke her citizenship.

The case of Letts, who holds dual citizenship through his Canadian father, has raised questions about whether the UK government will take similar steps to revoke his citizenship.

Letts' parents, John Letts and Sally Lane, have long denied that their son joined the Islamic state group and have appealed to both Britain and Canada to bring him back.

The couple are currently awaiting trial for funding terrorism after it was found that they had sent money to their son in Syria.

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