Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Wednesday the United States would not allow an American-born woman who joined the Islamic State terrorist group back into the country.
In 2015, Hoda Muthana, then 19, gained national attention for leaving her family in Birmingham, Alabama, to join the Sunni Muslim extremist group.
Now, the remorseful 24-year-old is seeking to return to the United States with her 18-month-old son. She escaped from the Islamic State, but was captured by Kurdish forces and is being held at a refugee camp in Syria.
“Ms. Hoda Muthana is not a U.S. citizen and will not be admitted into the United States,” Pompeo said in a statement. “She does not have any legal basis, no valid U.S. passport, no right to a passport, nor any visa to travel to the United States. We continue to strongly advise all U.S. citizens not to travel to Syria.”
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President Donald Trump tweeted Wednesday, “I have instructed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, and he fully agrees, not to allow Hoda Muthana back into the Country!”
Muthana reportedly said on her Twitter account in 2015 that Americans must commit violence against each other on national holidays.
“Americans wake up! Men and women altogether. You have much to do while you live under our greatest enemy, enough of your sleeping!” she wrote. “Go on drive-bys, and spill all of their blood, or rent a big truck and drive all over them. Veterans, Patriots, Memorial, etc day … Kill them.”
However, she recent told The Guardian newspaper: “I believe that America gives second chances. I want to return, and I’ll never come back to the Middle East. America can take my passport, and I wouldn’t mind.”
The State Department in its statement did not give a clear explanation of why Muthana, born in 1994 in Hackensack, New Jersey, was not a legal citizen.
Fox News reported that her legal representative, Hassan Shibly, said her father was a foreign diplomat working in the United States. However, he had stopped being a foreign diplomat months before she was born.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services says children born in the United States to accredited foreign diplomatic officials do not gain birthright citizenship, according to Fox News.