Open Letter to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office/Boris Johnson
Dear Mr Johnson,
Re Amina Al-Jeffery
We the undersigned write to ask in the strongest possible terms that the FCO brings every possible pressure to bear on the authorities in Saudi Arabia to ensure the safe return of this young woman to the UK without delay.
Leading women’s rights charity calls on British government to repatriate 21-year-old Welsh “honour” based violence victim imprisoned in Saudi Arabia and to extradite her father to the UK to face justice
Diana Nammi, Executive Director of the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation is available for interview.
On Wednesday 3rd August 2016, in London, Mr Justice Holman, Judge at the Family Division of the High Court, will rule on the case of British national Amina Al-Jeffery, who grew up in Swansea and was taken to Saudi Arabia when she was 16 years old by her father who claimed that she was becoming too Westernised.
Amina, who also holds Saudi Arabian citizenship, has described being imprisoned by her father in horrific conditions, at one stage with metal bars on the door. She says her father has beaten her, banned her from using the internet and telephone, denied her food and prevented her access to the bathroom, forcing her to urinate in a cup.
IKWRO and others call for a boycott of the Sharia law inquiry.
We are writing to you because you signed a letter of women’s rights advocates calling on the Home Secretary of the UK, Theresa May (and soon to be PM) regarding the inquiry into sharia law.
We called on the Home Secretary not to have a theological inquiry but an impartial human rights inquiry, to appoint a Judge able to compel evidence to lead it and to stand down Imams who should not be advisers to the Inquiry. We called instead, for women’s rights advocates with knowledge of equality law and gender-based violence and laws and struggles in other countries to support the inquiry.
We have had no response from the government since the letter was published, although the current panel Chair has issued a call for evidence.
Today, an unprecedented number of women’s rights campaigners and organisations from Britain and internationally, including IKWRO, have submitted a letter to the Home Secretary raising serious concerns about the government’s ‘independent review’ into Sharia courts in Britain. The letter states that the limited scope of inquiry and its inappropriate theological approach will do nothing to address the discriminatory effect and intent of the courts on private and family matters: areas where, arguably, the greatest human rights violations of minority women in the UK take place.