Shamima and Jarrah Begum - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 5:13 pm on 11th March 2019.

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Photo of Baroness Berridge Baroness Berridge Conservative 5:13 pm, 11th March 2019

My Lords, in relation to this matter, I raised the specific situation of children twice in previous Urgent Questions. Our law has a strong history of not just taking the interests of a child into account: in our family courts the interests of the child are paramount. How can it be that we do not have any legal process for the interests of the child to be considered separately from those of the parent?

The Statement said that children were taken out of the jurisdiction into Syria. Is it not the duty of a local authority to get this matter before our family courts, so that the interests of these children can be represented separately from those of their parents, and a decision made on whether it is safe to get them out of that situation if they should be separated from their parents?