Spotlight on Thai asylum cases

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Spotlight on Thai asylum cases

A Saudi teenager who fled to Thailand saying she feared her family would kill her has been granted asylum in Canada, the Thai immigration chief told Reuters on Friday.

"Canada has been unequivocal that we'll stand up for human rights and women's rights around the world", Trudeau said.

The news began circulating and eventually Phil Robertson, the Deputy Asia Director of Human Rights Watch, tweeted out that al-Qunun needed access to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHRC). She had said in her online postings that she was afraid of such an encounter.

Ms Alqunun and her supporters drew global attention to her case through a social media campaign launched mostly on Twitter.

Saudi Arabia's guardianship system requires women to have permission from a male relative to work, travel, marry and even get medical treatment in some cases.

Qunun was initially denied entry to Thailand when she arrived at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi airport on Saturday, intending to fly from there to Australia to seek asylum.

World football governing body FIFA says Mr.al-Araibi should be freed and allowed to return to Australia where he plays for Melbourne football club Pascoe Vale in the second tier of the Australian League.

When asked if bringing al-Qunun to Canada could further inflame tensions with Saudi Arabia, Trudeau would only say Canada is standing up for human rights.

Al-Qunun has alleged that her father physically abused her and tried to force her into an arranged marriage. She later told reporters that Australia was assessing Alqunun's request for resettlement.

A Korean Air flight carrying Ms Alqunun left Bangkok for Seoul on Friday night at 11:37pm Bangkok time, a Thai airport official said.

She commended Thailand for referring al-Qunun's case to the UNHCR and reiterated that Australia was now engaged in the assessment process of her asylum claim as required.

Qunun had previously expressed wanting to come to Canada on her Twitter account, which was deleted on Friday after getting death threats, Reuters reported.

"Refugee protection today is often under threat and can not always be assured, but in this instance worldwide refugee law and overriding values of humanity have prevailed", UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said in a statement. She said she was fleeing abuse by her family.

Surachate discussed Alqunun's situation on Tuesday with Saudi Charge d'Affaires in Thailand Abdalelah Mohammed A. Alsheaiby.

The foreign minister there, Marise Payne, met with senior Thai officials in Bangkok on Thursday.

Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun's attempt to flee the ultra-conservative kingdom has been embraced by rights groups as a beacon of defiance against repression.

Around midday on Friday, Qunun posted on her Twitter account that she had "bad and good news!"

"And actually his tribe is one of the largest tribes in Saudi Arabia, so it's quite influential and she certainly would have faced grievous physical harm and perhaps death if she had been sent back based on what I've been told by our researcher and others", he said.

She also opened up about living with her family in Saudi Arabia, describing it as hard as she had no freedom.

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