Ahmed Ali Muthana, Hoda Muthana’s Dad: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Hoda Muthana

ABC News screengrab Ahmed Ali Muthana, father of Hoda Muthana, sues US to bring daughter home after she joined ISIS.

Ahmed Ali Muthana, the father of Hoda Muthana, the Alabama woman who joined ISIS, is suing the Trump administration for refusing to allow her back in the country.

Hoda Muthana, 24, told The Guardian that she regrets joining ISIS and wants to return to Alabama with her 18-month-old son after the child’s father, a Tunisian ISIS militant, was killed.

The Trump administration is refusing to allow her back into the country, taking the extraordinary step of declaring that she is no longer a United States citizen.

Her father Ahmed Ali Muthana, who was barred by the FBI from sending his daughter money, has filed an emergency lawsuit asking for a federal court to affirm that Muthana is a US citizen and can return with her son, The Guardian reports.

Ali Muthana is a former Yemeni diplomat to the United Nations. The US does not grant citizenship to children of diplomats but his daughter was born in Alabama five months after he surrendered his diplomatic credentials after Yemen descended into a civil war. The State Department did not recognize that he left his position until after his daughter was born and says she is therefore ineligible. The lawsuit says Muthana is entitled to citizenship because he was no longer a diplomat and her mother was a permanent resident of the United States.

Here’s what you need to know:

1. Hoda Muthana Joined ISIS in 2014 & Became a Propaganda Weapon

Hoda Muthana flew to Syria in 2014 and went to the ISIS stronghold of Raqqa where she married Australian jihadist Suhan Rahman, the first of her three husbands.

After her husband was killed, Muthana called on Americans to kill military members and veterans.

“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 drivebys, and spill all of their blood, or rent a big truck and drive all over them. Veterans, Patriots, Memorial, etc day … Kill them.”

She later married a Tunisian jihadist and had a son, Adam. Her second husband was killed in Mosul.

Six months ago, she and Adam fled to the village of Susa where she was captured by Kurdish forces and is now being held in a refugee camp in northern Syria.

2. Muthana Says She ‘Regrets’ Joining ISIS

Muthana told The Guardian that she “deeply regrets” joining ISIS.

“We were basically in the time of ignorance […] and then became jihadi, if you like to describe it that way,” she said. “I thought I was doing things correctly for the sake of God.”

“I look back now and I think I was very arrogant,” she continued. “Now I’m worried about my son’s future. In the end I didn’t have many friends left, because the more I talked about the oppression of Isis the more I lost friends. I was brainwashed once and my friends are still brainwashed.”

3. Muthana Wants to Return to the US With Her Son

Muthana told The Guardian that she hopes she can convince American officials to forgive her for “being so ignorant.”

“I would tell them please forgive me for being so ignorant, and I was really young and ignorant and I was 19 when I decided to leave,” she said. “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.”

According to a lawsuit filed by her father, Ahmed Ali Muthana, Hoda Muthana is “prepared and willing to surrender to any charges the United States justice department finds appropriate and necessary. She simply requires the assistance of her government in facilitating that return for herself and her young son.”

4. The US Says Hoda Muthana is Not a US Citizen

The US government says that Hoda Muthana is not a US citizen because of the timeline of paperwork filed in 1994, when she was born.

Ahmed Ali Muthana left his position as a Yemeni diplomat to the United Nations after the country descended into a civil war and was asked to surrender his diplomatic ID in June of 1994. Hoda was born in Hoover, Alabama in October of 1994.

The State Department questioned her right to citizenship years earlier when her father sought a passport for her because their records say he was a diplomat until February 1995. The US grants citizenship to all children born in the US except children of diplomats.

Ahmed Ali Muthana’s lawsuit says that the state department had accepted a letter from the US mission to the UN that affirmed that he was no longer a diplomat before his daughter’s birth and the passport was granted. The lawsuit also says that Hoda should be entitled to citizenship because her mother was a US permanent resident by July 1994.

5. Ahmed Ali Muthana is Suing The Trump Administration to Allow His Daughter to Return

Ahmed Ali Muthana’s lawsuit seeks an emergency order from a court affirming Hoda’s citizenship and right to return.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said earlier this week that Ahmed Ali Muthana’s diplomatic status was a key issue in the department’s decision to bar Hoda from returning.

“This is a woman who inflicted enormous risk on American soldiers, on American citizens,” he said. “She is a terrorist. She’s not coming back.”

But Stephen Vladeck, a University of Texas law professor, told The Guardian that “the secretary of state can’t just issue a statement saying someone is not a citizen.”

“That’s not how this works,” he said. “There’s a process and it’s not at all clear that the government has show any interest in following it.”

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