UK Cabinet Refuses to Grant Citizenship to Family of Bashar Assad's Uncle

Published October 29th, 2018 - 08:30 GMT
Syrian President Bashar Al Assad. (AFP/File)
Syrian President Bashar Al Assad. (AFP/File)

The British government has refused to grant the UK citizenship to the wife and sons of Rifaat Assad, who is the uncle of the head of Syria’s regime, Bashar Assad, The Daily Mail has reported.

They were told that, as close relatives of Bashar Assad, giving them British passports would undermine the UK government’s opposition to his bloody regime, said the newspaper.

The family members appealed against the decision at a secret immigration tribunal.

But a judgment seen by The Mail on Sunday reveals that their challenge has been rejected by the Special Immigration Appeals Commission.

Judges admitted they did not know exactly how close the aunt and cousins were to President Assad but said the important consideration was the damage caused to Britain’s reputation if they were allowed citizenship.

Rifaat Assad's wife was not named for legal reasons.

Two of her sons who have lived in the UK for more than a decade also had their applications rejected, along with that of a third son of Rifaat by another woman.

According to the report, advice from the Foreign Office to the Home Office warned that granting Assad’s relatives citizenship "would be interpreted as a softening stance towards the regime and of faltering commitment to the opposition."

This article has been adapted from its original source.

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