This woman tried to escape her family and ended up trapped in an airport.
18-year-old Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun is from Saudi Arabia and attempted to flee her family while on a vacation in Kuwait. She barricaded herself in a hotel room at an airport in Bangkok to keep immigration officials from forcing her onto a flight back to Kuwait.
The Saudi teen said she feared her family would kill her for denouncing Islam, claiming her family regularly threatened to kill her. One of her friends told BBC her family once locked her alone in the house “for more than six months because she cut her hair.”
al-Qunun said she bought a plane ticket to Australia, where she planned to seek asylum, but her passport was taken by a Saudi diplomat when she landed in Bangkok. Thai officials said they confiscated it after she tried to enter the country without a visa, which she denies.
She then barricaded herself in an airport hotel room, alleging security officials were posted in the hotel to make sure she could not leave for more than a day.
al-Qunun’s passport was eventually returned to her and she was granted access to leave the airport to meet with UNHCR who will interview her and evaluate her need for asylum.