Socialist Party
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16 March 2011

Yahya victory

Yahya Al Faifi, exiled Saudi trade unionist and CWI member, and his family, have won the right to indefinite leave to remain in Britain.

Yahya's victory has followed a nine-year campaign to win refugee status from the British government, which has won the support of thousands of trade unionists across the country.

Yahya had been forced to flee Saudi Arabia with his family in 2002 following death threats from the Saudi secret police when he publicly campaigned for trade union rights. Despite overwhelming evidence the Home Office denied that his life was under threat and has been attempting to deport Yahya and his family back to Saudi Arabia to face imprisonment, torture or even worse.

The revolutionary movements across the Middle East have undoubtedly had a huge effect in reversing the Home Office's decision. Yahya's return and imprisonment would have embarrassed both governments in a time of enormous instability.

Yahya has made it absolutely clear he will continue to fight for trade union and democratic rights, for social justice and the removal of the repressive regime in Saudi Arabia. He sends his thanks to all those who supported him and helped make the continuation of his struggle possible.

Dave Reid