ISIS bride Zehra Duman could return to Australia as government scrambles to fill a loophole in the law
Major flaws in our national security laws could allow more than a dozen suspected Islamic State terrorists to seek the return of their Australian citizenship.
A loophole in the law could allow jihadist bride Zehra Duman (pictured) to return to Australia despite her known ties to the Islamic State terror group
It comes four months after the High Court of Australia ruled that the laws ending citizenship were invalid because they were based on a ministerial decision rather than a court judgement.
Government lawyers told the legal team of ISIS jihadist bride Zehra Duman on Monday that they would no longer appeal the coalition government’s decision to strip her of her citizenship.
In late 2014, then 19-year-old Duman went to Syria and became Australia’s most notorious jihadist bride after marrying three ISIS fighters, including Melbourne extremist Mahmoud Abdullatif, known as “playboy jihad”.
In 2014, Duman left Melbourne at the age of 19 to join ISIS in Syria. She is believed to be living in a refugee camp in Turkey with her two children and is desperate to return to Australia. Pictured: the woman believed to be Duman (middle) next to helpers
The Albanian government has been trying to find a legal solution to the citizenship issue since the High Court ruling.
In June, the court overturned the previous government’s decision to revoke Australian-Turkish dual citizen Delil Alexander’s Australian citizenship while he was being detained in Syria.
The verdict, which affected Alexander and one other person, set a precedent and had a direct impact on around 20 Australians who were stripped of their citizenship for alleged terrorist connections.
The government will introduce its own citizenship termination laws, which would empower a court instead of a minister to decide whether a person involved in terrorist activity should lose their citizenship.
The laws are understood to apply to individuals committing terrorist offenses both abroad and on Australian soil.
It comes as threats Dunam made on social media resurface, where she has been spreading vile ISIS propaganda and directly threatening Australia and the family of a Daily Mail Australia reporter.
Duman used social media to post a series of propaganda images promoting ISIS (pictured)
In 2015, a Twitter account believed to be run by Duman posted images of ISIS women wielding machine guns and standing next to a BMW car, dressed head-to-toe in Islamic clothing, with the caption, ” 5 Star Jihad”.
In a tweet, Duman said, “USA + Australia how does it feel that all five of us were born and raised in your country and now here are thirsty for your (sic) blood?”
At the time, Duman told Daily Mail Australia: “All you need to know is that the next time we come to Australia, I come to Australia and make it part of the Islamic State bi’nillah (with the permission of Allah).
“Oh, and do I miss my family? Well I think you’ll miss yours soon (sic). Thank you and have a nice day, mate!’
Duman was arrested in Syria’s Kurdish region following the collapse of the Islamic State in March 2019, and her Australian citizenship was revoked later that year.
With the help of people smugglers, she escaped the al-Hol detention center and fled to Turkey with her son Jarred and daughter Layla, where she was convicted in 2020 of belonging to a terrorist group.
Her family in Melbourne have long campaigned for her return, saying she was “brainwashed” and Duman asked that she return home and treat her children like “normal kids” in Australia.
The Australian extremist sent this threatening message to a Daily Mail Australia journalist on January 22, 2015 (pictured).
In one of her tweets, Duman boasted that she and American jihadi brides were thirsty for Australian and American blood (pictured).
The Albanian government intends to introduce laws ending citizenship, empowering a court to decide whether a person involved in terrorist activities should have their citizenship revoked (pictured Zehra’s propaganda showing Islamic State women next to a BMW indicates).