Council denies ‘litany of failures’ in Shamima Begum case

By William Eichler | 19 February 2019

Tower Hamlets LBC has denied claims it was responsible for a ‘litany of failures’ leading up to teenager Shamima Begum's decision to join Daesh.

Lawyer Tasnime Akunjee said it was ‘almost inconceivable’ that no agency had been investigated in the wake of Begum’s decision to join the Islamist group in 2015 with two other schoolgirls and that there were serious questions for the council and Mayor John Biggs to answer.

But a council spokesman said the accusations were ‘unfair and skewed,’ adding: ‘A multi-agency partnership gold group found that this case did not meet the threshold for a serious case review.

‘Instead, the council worked alongside the Government’s Prevent team and the police’s SO15 counter terrorism team to conduct a wider review and provide in-depth support to the school, its staff, parents and pupils in order to investigate what had happened and stop others following in their footsteps.

‘This work, which continues to this day, has been commended by the Government.'

Mayor Biggs described Mr Akunjee’s accusations as ‘not a fair reflection of the situation,' adding: ‘We have put in place robust measures to help prevent radicalisation in our schools.'

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