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Saudi refugee claims to have been granted asylum in Australia

12 January 2019 12:10 am - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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DAILY MAIL, 11th JANUARY, 2019- A Saudi teenager who fled to Thailand fearing her family would kill her for renouncing Islam has claimed to have been granted asylum in Australia, saying: ‘I am so happy, I will start a new life.’


Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun made headlines earlier this week after she began tweeting from the transit area of Bangkok airport.


The 18-year-old said she had escaped from Kuwait and that her life would be in danger if she were forced to return to Saudi Arabia.


Within hours, she amassed a huge following on Twitter as she refused to board a flight back the conservative kingdom and barricaded herself inside a 
hotel room.


Thai authorities allowed her to enter the country on Monday evening and the UN refugee agency referred Rahaf to Australia for consideration for refugee resettlement.
Yesterday Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne was in Bangkok after Canberra said it would consider giving asylum to the 18-year-old. Payne said there was no time-frame for the assessment of the case.


Now, in an exclusive interview with Daily Mail Australia, Rahaf has claimed her case has been successful - although the Australian government has said they ‘will consider’ her referral from the UNHCR.


‘They accepted me,’ she said. ‘I am so happy! I will start a new life.’


She added that she is not allowed to reveal where she is in Bangkok.

 


Saudi asylum seeker deletes Twitter account after death threats

BANGKOK REUTERS Jan 11- A Saudi teenager who fled to Thailand saying she feared her family would kill her deleted her Twitter account on Friday after getting death threats, a friend said, while she awaits a decision on where she might be granted asylum.


Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun, 18, arrived in Thailand on Saturday and was initially denied entry.


She soon started posting messages on Twitter from the transit area of Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport saying she had “escaped Kuwait” and her life would be in danger if forced to return to Saudi Arabia.


Within hours, a campaign sprang up dubbed #SaveRahaf, spread on Twitter by a loose network of activists.


Thai authorities allowed her to enter the country on Monday and the U.N. refugee agency later referred her case to Australia for consideration for refugee resettlement.


Around mid-day on Friday, her Twitter account, @rahaf84427714, went offline after she posted that she had “bad and good news!” The account reappeared briefly about an hour later but went offline again within minutes.


A Twitter user known as Nourah, whom Qunun has referred to as a friend, tweeted that Qunun “received death threats and for this reason she closed her Twitter account”.

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