The United Nation refugee agency has welcomed Canada's offer of asylum to a Saudi teenager who ran away from her family.
Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun, 18, was initially under threat of deportation from Thailand when her flight from Kuwait stopped in Bangkok last week. She was on her way to seek asylum in Australia.
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said in a statement that the quick actions over the past week of Thai authoritites in providing temporary refuge and facilitating refugee status, and of the Canadian government in offering the teenager emergency resettlement, were key to the successful resolution of this case.
Al-Qunun left Thailand en route to Canada on Friday.
“Al-Qunun’s plight has captured the world’s attention over the past few days, providing a glimpse into the precarious situation of millions of refugees worldwide,” said UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi.
“Refugee protection today is often under threat and cannot always be assured, but in this instance international refugee law and overriding values of humanity have prevailed.”