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19 remaininng in UAE say "in our country, we will die every day.”

As eleven of the 45 Tamil refugees, who found themselves in the UAE after attempting to escape Sri Lanka via shipk, arrive in Los Angeles this week, 19 others await to find out their fate.

The 19 remaining in Dubai are said to be well looked after, but fear deportation, stating that they will die if they are returned to Sri Lanka, reports The National.

One man, with the pseudonym Akaliniyan said:

"We don’t know when we can leave, we hope this ordeal will end soon."

If we go back to Sri Lanka, we will not remain alive. We don’t need any comforts or luxury. We are happy to live anywhere. But in our country, we will die every day.”

A lawyer acting on their behalf, Kulasegaram Geertharthanan from Jein Solicitors in the UK who has submitted asylum applications on their behalf has called for easy access to a telephone however so that they may have access to a counsellor and to contact loved ones.

Geertharthanan said:

"A telephone or fax facility would help them contact their family,”

“This would make them feel more safe when they can share emotions with people they know.

“There is also need for a counsellor to provide regular psychological support. Their mental state is not good because they are away from family and we need to get a counsellor to talk to them, at least on the phone.”


See full article by The National, including stories of those refugees who have found a new home in Los Angeles here.

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