A statement comparing the Manchester Arena bomb attack to military action in Syria by an ISIS bride has been met with a silence from the families of Chloe Rutherford and Liam Curry.
The South Tyneside couple, described by their parents as perfect for each other, were among the 22 people killed on May 22, 2017.
Chloe, 17 and Liam, 19 had been at the Ariana Grande concert when a bomb exploded in the foyer of the arena cutting short their lives and leaving many more injured.
Now, as their heartbroken families continue to survive each day knowing they will never see their loved ones again, teenager Shamima Begum - who left London to join the Islamic State in Syria and is now begging to come back to the UK to live - has described the Manchester bomb attack as being akin to the “women and children” being bombed in IS territory in Baghuz.
Begum, now, 19, left her home in 2015 with two friends to join the terrorist group after being partly inspired by IS fighters beheading hostages and partly by other propaganda films showing the “good life” IS could offer.
In an interview, with the BBC, following the birth of her third child at the weekend, she was asked about the attack in Manchester.
Because women and children are being killed back in the Islamic State right now and it’s kind of retaliationShamima Begum
She said it was “fair justification” as a retaliation for those being killed in the Islamic State.
She said: “I do feel that it’s wrong that innocent people did get killed. It’s one thing to kill a soldier that is fighting you, it’s self-defence, but to kill the people like women and children...
“Just people like the women and children in Baghuz that are being killed right now unjustly, the bombings. It’s a two-way thing really.
“Because women and children are being killed back in the Islamic State right now and it’s kind of retaliation.
“Like, their justification was that it was retaliation so I thought ‘OK, that is a fair justification’.”
Begum is hoping to return to the UK, however, since the news broke she had been discovered in a camp in Syria after fleeing Baghuz, IS’s last stronghold in the country, a number of people have taken to social media to launch petitions calling on the government to block her return.
The Rutherford and Curry families say they do not wish to comments on Begum’s views