Family of ISIS bride files federal lawsuit against Trump

Matt Saintsing
February 22, 2019 - 11:12 am

Photo Courtesy of the Associated Press

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The father of an Alabama woman who fled to Syria to join ISIS filed a lawsuit in federal court late Thursday challenging President Trump’s administration’s claim that she is not a U.S. citizen—and thus barring her from re-entering the United States—as unconstitutional. 

A former diplomat at the United Nations for Yemen and naturalized U.S. citizen, Ahmed Ali Muthana alleges in a lawsuit filed in federal court in Washington, D.C. that comments coming from the White House are violating the rights of his daughter, 24-year-old Hoda Muthana and her son—currently both in a Kurdish-controlled refugee camp in northern Syria. 

Trump, as well as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Attorney General William Barr are listed as defendants in the case. On Wednesday, Trump tweeted he “instructed” Pompeo “not to allow Hoda Muthana back into the Country!” 

Pompeo released a statement that day saying Muthana has “no legal basis” to be brought back to the United States. 

Muthana left the University of Alabama at Birmingham to join the Islamic State in Syria in 2014. While there, she married two ISIS fighters, having a baby with one of them. Both men were killed in combat. 

RELATED: 'It’s about the Rule of Law and the Constitution,' says lawyer for ISIS bride

Hassan Shibly, a lawyer representing the Muthana family, told ConnectingVets in an interview Thursday that she fully admits she was in the wrong and is not only willing to come back to face the consequences, but she is “demanding” it. 

RELATED PODCAST: Why should she return and face justice?  Hear the interview with Hassan Shibly, Muthana family attorney

The administration claims that even though Muthana was born in New Jersey in 1994, she is not an American citizen since her father was a diplomat, under the Immigration and Nationality Act. 

According to Shibly, however, no law—not even federal statues—can trump the Constitution and courts have consistently upheld birthright citizenship in America. 

“What (the administration) is saying is the United States has no jurisdiction over her, which gives her a free pass not to hold her accountable,” says Shibly. 

RELATED: Alabama woman who joined Islamic State seeks return to US

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