Neda Amin, the Iranian journalist threatened with deportation from Turkey and execution in Iran, has arrived safely in Israel after being granted assylum by the Jewish state.
This is wonderful news to many of us watching Neda’ story, especially after hearing she missed her initial flight to Israel on Monday.
Neda was met at Ben Gurion airport by Times of Israel editor David Horovitz, who was in contact with Israeli authorities to bring Neda safely to Israel.
“Thank you,” said Amin, over and over when she arrived, embracing Horovitz. “You saved me.”
— Raphael Ahren (@RaphaelAhren) August 10, 2017
Horovitz thanked all of the Israeli officials who had worked to ensure her well-being. “I’m proud to live in a country that responded so instinctively to help somebody who was in danger.”
“As soon as we brought Neda’s case to the attention of the Israeli authorities, everybody was helpful and professional,” he said.
Neda, 32, had to leave Iran in 2014 after having been arrested several times due to her articles and books. One of her books, Zenjir (“The Chain”) has been banned in Iran.
“Zenjir is a feminist book about the oppression of women in Iran,” she said. “One of my arrests in the country was due to that book. The pressure from the government would not stop so I had to leave.”
In May 2015, she became a refugee recognised by the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
The document granted to Neda by the UNHCR states that “as a refugee, she should be protected from forcible return to a country where she would face threats to her life or freedom.”
However, Neda was sent a notice by Turkish immigration authorities on July 5, which stated that her application for international protection has been rejected. “If you do not apply for an authorised administrative court or do not inform our provincial directorate of your application to the court in 30 days, you will be deported. And if you do not want a re-entry ban to be imposed on you, leave Turkey within the stated period,” the notice added.
Neda said that she went to the UN office in Turkey but the UN authorities refused to help her. “They told me if Turkey removes my status as a refugee, there is nothing that they can do about it.
Fortunately, Israel came to the rescue and offered Neda asylum, where she arrived safely today.
Praise the Lord that Neda Amin has arrived safely in Israel and thank you Israel for welcoming her with open arms. We pray she will have a blessed life in Israel.