Rahaf Mohammed Alqunun is mentioned to have boarded a aircraft Friday in Bangkok en route to Canada, where by she has been granted asylum.
Rahaf Mohammed Alqunun is explained to have boarded a plane Friday in Bangkok en route to Canada, in which she has been granted asylum.
Canada has granted asylum to the eighteen-year-previous Saudi lady who barricaded herself in a Bangkok lodge home just after escaping what she named abuse and oppression by relatives customers.
“The UNHCR has designed a request of Canada that we settle for Ms. Alqunun as a refugee, and we have recognized the U.N.’s ask for that we grant her asylum,” Key Minister Justin Trudeau told reporters Friday, referring to the office of the U.N. Superior Commissioner for Refugees.
Rahaf Mohammed Alqunun has boarded a aircraft in Bangkok and was anticipated to fly to Canada, Thai immigration law enforcement instructed The Associated Press on Friday. Australia had reported it was taking into consideration regardless of whether to offer you her asylum, but a UNHCR spokesman hinted in an e-mail to NPR that Ottawa moved far more rapidly.
“When referring situations with precise vulnerabilities who need fast resettlement, we connect great significance to the speed at which international locations look at and system cases,” Babar Baloch wrote.
Alqunun had been on trip with her family members in Kuwait earlier this month when she ran away and took a flight to Bangkok, NPR experiences. She landed Saturday and prepared to fly from there to Australia.
In Bangkok, Thai agents stopped Alqunun at the airport and seized her passport. Alqunun hid in a transit lounge resort home and commenced tweeting in Arabic about her plight.
“I am the woman who ran absent to Thailand. I’m now in authentic risk for the reason that the Saudi embassy is making an attempt to drive me to return,” she wrote in her initial tweet.
Egyptian-American activist Mona Eltahawy translated the tweets into English, and within times, Alqunun gathered hundreds of followers.
“I am not leaving my home until I see UNHCR [the U.N. refugee agency],” she explained in a online video assertion. “I want asylum.”
She said she suffered bodily abuse at the arms of loved ones associates and alleged they had tried using to marry her off from her will. Alqunun’s relatives so far has not commented publicly on the accusations.
Her tweets attracted the focus of the U.N., the Australian government and reporters. The UNHCR granted her refugee status, and Australia’s Department of Household Affairs informed NPR that Australia would “look at this referral [for refugee resettlement] in the usual way, as it does with all UNHCR referrals.”
Alqunun briefly disabled her Twitter account because of to death threats, in accordance to a mate. It was reinstated as of late Friday, and she posted images of herself keeping her eco-friendly Saudi passport aboard a flight.
“third region,” she wrote, evidently referring to Canada. “I did it.”
Alqunun’s thriving gambit arrives amid renewed interest on Saudi Arabia’s therapy of women of all ages.
Saudi Arabia maintains a male guardianship system. Just about every Saudi girl is demanded to have a male relative – this sort of as a father, uncle or even son – who approves major lifestyle decisions like relationship, get the job done, examine and vacation. Last calendar year, Saudi Arabia gave gals the suitable to push, but then arrested more than a dozen girls activists who had pushed for the suitable, NPR’s Deborah Amos experiences.
Alqunun’s circumstance remembers a further girl who tried out to escape Saudi Arabia, as NPR’s Sasha Ingber has documented. Dina Ali Lasloom fled from Kuwait to the Philippines in 2017. She, far too, utilised social media in a bid to attain Australia. As a substitute, she was dragged onto a airplane from Manila to Riyadh, her mouth taped shut and her arms and legs certain, in accordance to The New York Moments.
Canada’s granting of asylum to Alqunun could insert to tensions with Saudi Arabia. Riyadh expelled Canada’s ambassador past 12 months and recalled its own major diplomat in Ottawa just after Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland criticized the jailing of two Saudi women activists. Saudi Arabia also banned a lot more than ten,000 of its students from returning to higher education in Canada and said its countrywide airline would end flying to Toronto, NPR’s Jackie Northam reports. Asked whether accepting Alqunun will even more pressure that marriage, Trudeau stood company.
“Canada has been unequivocal that we will constantly stand up for human rights, and women’s legal rights about the entire world,” the key minster mentioned. “This is section of a prolonged tradition of Canada participating constructively and positively in the globe and doing the job with our companions, allies and with the United Nations.”