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Sudan Fighting: Family’s Case Raised in Parliament

An Oxford woman is asking the government to “show empathy” to her family who are trapped in Khartoum.

Niam Ali, her two-year-old son Yousif, and husband Mohammed Yassien, were denied a flight home after being told they were not all eligible for rescue.

They were informed Tuesday night of another evacuation flight to the UK, but said they were not given enough time to get to the airport.

Their case was raised in the House of Commons on Tuesday.

Clashes between the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) paramilitary group and the Sudanese army began on 15 April.

Mrs Ali and her son both hold British passports, but her husband has a Sudanese passport and no visa.

This meant once they reached the final checkpoint for the evacuation flight he was turned away.

Layla Moran, MP for Oxford West and Abingdon, told Andrew Mitchell, minister for the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, that “cool-headed common sense” was required.

She also said she was concerned about other constituents being tied up in the “intricacies of the system”.

Mr Mitchell said the Foreign Office would do everything it could to help.

Speaking to the BBC on Wednesday morning, Ms Ali said she was informed at 23:00 on Tuesday of Wednesday’s flight.

“It takes over 12 hours to get from Khartoum to Port Sudan so it’s impossible,” she said.

“It’s upsetting because it just feels like it’s not a genuine attempt to save people stuck in Khartoum.

“Also the email doesn’t confirm that immediate family members without visa can travel, so it was just upsetting because it’s a solution that’s not a solution.”

She added: “It feels like it’s an obvious situation. I’m not asking for much, I just want safety for my family.”

A UK Government spokesperson said: “The UK has carried out by far the longest and largest evacuation of any Western country from Sudan, bringing 2,341 people out in under one week.

“It has always been the case that the evacuation has been open to British nationals and their eligible family members, with a later exemption for NHS clinicians.

“Preventing a humanitarian emergency in Sudan is our focus right now. Alongside the UK evacuation effort, we are working with international partners and the United Nations to bring an end to fighting.”

Source : BBC