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Federal Judge Rules U.S.-Born ‘ISIS Bride’ Not an American Citizen, U.S. Not Required to Repatriate Her

Nov 2, 2019; South Bend, IN, USA; A F-16 lighter jet flies over the U.S. flag (Matt Cashore/USA TODAY Sports)

A federal judge ruled Thursday that 25-year-old Hoda Muthana, who lived in Alabama but left the U.S. in 2014 to join ISIS, is not an American citizen and therefore the country is not required to repatriate her.

Muthana is the daughter of Yemen’s former ambassador to the United Nations, Ahmed Ali Muthana. Judge Reggie Walton ruled that because Hoda was born while Ahmed Ali still had diplomatic status, Hoda could not be considered a U.S. citizen. Ahmed Ali has since become a naturalized citizen.

In addition, Walton ruled that Ahmed Ali cannot provide financial aid to his daughter, who escaped from ISIS to a Kurdish refugee camp in 2018. Hoda Muthana has a son, Adam, who was born in ISIS territory.

U.S. law prevents the children of foreign diplomats from receiving American citizenship by birthright. Lawyers for Muthana’s family had claimed Ahmed Ali’s diplomatic status expired two months before Hoda’s birth in New Jersey, a claim apparently rejected by Judge Walton.

Muthana had previously said in an interview that she wished to return to the U.S.

“I want my son to be around my family, I want to go to school, I want to have a job and I want to have my own car,” she said in an interview with NBC.

The woman had previously called on jihadists in the U.S. to “go on drivebys, and spill all of their blood.”

“Anyone that believes in God believes that everyone deserves a second chance, no matter how harmful their sins were,” Muthana told NBC.

President Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo have previously expressed opposition to authorizing Muthana’s return.

I have instructed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and he fully agrees, not to allow Hoda Muthana back into the Country!” Trump wrote on Twitter in February of this year.

Zachary Evans is a news writer for National Review Online. He is a veteran of the Israeli Defense Forces and a trained violist.

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