Anti-ISIS campaign uses Zayn Malik to deter British girls from going to Syria

An anti-ISIS project is using former One Direction star Zayn Malik as a role model to stop British Muslim girls from going to Syria.

The project comes following the disappearance of three British schoolgirls who crossed the border from Turkey to join ISIS in Syria in February.

The scheme is being led by former Apprentice star Nurun Ahmed.

Nurun Ahmed
Nurun Ahmed

The 36-year-old, who runs three businesses, told The Sun on Sunday: “The radicals who groom teenage girls tell them groups like ISIS are their only hope for a future.

“We need girls to know this is not true and that there is hope for them in this country.

“We will give them examples of people they can relate to, like Zayn Malik from One Direction, to help them understand that they have opportunities.”

Former 1D star Zayn has spoken in the past of the pressures of being a Muslim pop star.

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In February three British schoolgirls from the Bethnal Green Academy in east London – Shamima Begum, Amira Abase and Kadiza Sultana – disappeared from their homes in east London and flew to Turkey, before crossing the border into war-torn Syria.

The girls were believed to have been married off to ISIS fighters but have since been reported missing, with the group now “thoroughly searching for them” after their escape.

Home secretary Theresa May declined to comment this week on whether young British girls might be allowed back into the UK.

The new project, Prevent Engage and Inspire, will use the schoolgirls’ story to stop other vulnerable girls from following them.

The project is being rolled out in east London and the Apprentice star says it is vital that talks are given at schools before the summer.


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