Rights group urges Thailand not to return Saudi woman fleeing family
BANGKOK/DUBAI (Reuters) – A human rights group advised Thai government on Monday to halt plans to deport an 18-year-old Saudi woman who says she is fleeing abuse from her family and fears they are going to kill her if she is returned house.
Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun, a Saudi woman who claims to be fleeing her nation and family, speaks in a room in Bangkok, Thailand, January 6, 2019, on this nonetheless symbol taken from a video bought from social media. @rahaf84427714/by the use of REUTERS
Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun stated she fled Kuwait whilst her family was once visiting the Gulf nation and had deliberate to trip on from Thailand to Australia to search asylum. She stated she was once detained after leaving her airplane in Bangkok and informed she could be despatched again to Kuwait.
She was once scheduled to be despatched again on Kuwait Airways flight 412 leaving at 11:15 a.m. native time (0415 GMT).
“My brothers and family and the Saudi embassy will be waiting for me in Kuwait,” Qunun informed Reuters by way of textual content and voice message from a Bangkok transit lodge overdue on Sunday.
“They will kill me,” she stated. “My life is in danger. My family threatens to kill me for the most trivial things.”
Thai immigration government denied Qunun’s allegations they had been appearing on the behest of the Saudi govt, pronouncing she was once refused access to Thailand on Saturday night time as a result of she did not have the right kind paperwork for a visa on arrival.
A consultant from the Saudi embassy in Thailand stated there was once nobody to be had to remark.
New York-based Human Rights Watch stated Thailand will have to not ship Qunun again to her family as a result of she is an grownup who faces threat.
“Thai authorities should immediately halt any deportation, and either allow her to continue her travel to Australia or permit her to remain in Thailand to seek protection as a refugee,” Michael Page, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch, stated in a observation on Monday.
Qunun stated she had bought an Australian visa and booked a flight. She stated she deliberate to spend a couple of days in Thailand, a well-liked vacation spot for scientific remedy, so she would not spark suspicion when she left Kuwait.
“When I landed at the airport, someone came and said he would process the (Thai) visa but he took my passport. He came back with what seemed to be airport security and said that my parents objected and said I must return to Saudi Arabia via Kuwait Airways,” she stated.
She stated she believed she was once stopped after her family appealed to Kuwait Airways. A spokesman for Kuwait Airways stated he had no details about the case.
Thai immigration leader Surachate Hakparn stated he had had no touch with Saudi officers or Thailand’s international minister ahead of Qunun’s arrival. He stated she was once denied access as a result of she did not have a paid return price tag or a lodge reservation.
“She was over-exaggerating … She fled her family from Saudi Arabia and arrived in Thailand but she didn’t have necessary documents to enter. Thai immigration had to deny her entry,” he stated, describing such circumstances as same old process.
Additional reporting by way of Ghaida Ghantous in DUBAI; Writing by way of Kay Johnson; Editing by way of Paul Tait