Tareena Shakil, 26, is the first woman from the UK to return from the self-declared caliphate to be convicted of the offence. She is known as ISIS Mother. She was a bright, successful student who loved reality television shows and bands like the Spice Girls. Friends of Tareena Shakil describe her as fun-loving and caring young woman while her family have said they did not consider her particularly religious.
A former health worker from Birmingham, Shakil became the first woman to be convicted of joining the so-called Islamic State. She took her toddler son to Syria from where she posted images of him wearing an IS-branded balaclava. Shakil told the jury she had been escaping an abusive relationship. Sentencing her to six years, Mr Justice Inman said she had shown no remorse and had known her son’s future would ultimately be “as an IS fighter.”
Shakil flew from East Midlands Airport to Turkey, when she originally told friends she was going on a family beach holiday, before crossing the border into Syria. Tareena Shakil is typical of the young women who have made the journey, and this trial gave an insight into how and why would-be “jihadi brides” go to Raqqa.
Over the next few weeks Shakil sent messages home telling family and friends she was settled and happy. In one message, she said “this is my jihad” and urged people to take up arms for Isis. In a WhatsApp conversation with her father, she wrote: “I can leave, but I don’t want to. I want to die here as a martyr.”
She was finally jailed for six years by the Honourable court in UK.