World: Thai court orders release of Bahrain refugee soccer player - PressFrom - US
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WorldThai court orders release of Bahrain refugee soccer player

11:11  11 february  2019
11:11  11 february  2019 Source:   msn.com

Refugee footballer freed by Thailand returns to Australia

Refugee footballer freed by Thailand returns to Australia A refugee soccer player has returned home to a celebrity welcome in Australia after the threat of extradition to Bahrain was lifted three months after he was detained in Thailand. Hundreds of supporters carrying welcome signs were waiting at Melbourne Airport on Tuesday when Hakeem al-Araibi arrived on a commercial flight direct from Bangkok. Thailand had come under great pressure from Australia's government, sporting bodies and human rights groups to free Hakeem al-Araibi so he could return home to Australia, where he has refugee status and plays semi-professional soccer.

Hakeem Al -Araibi appeared in a Thai criminal court Monday to launch a formal challenge against Bahrain 's Outside the courtroom, former national Australian soccer player Francis Awaritefe, who is Al -Araibi has been openly critical of the Bahraini government and its record on human rights.

FILE PHOTO: Hakeem Al Araibi, a former member of Bahrain 's national soccer team who holds a refugee status in Australia arrives at court after he was World governing body FIFA also released a statement on Tuesday in which Secretary General Fatma Samoura called on the Thai and Bahraini

Thai court orders release of Bahrain refugee soccer player© The Associated Press FILE - In this Monday, Feb. 4, 2019, file photo, refugee soccer player Bahraini Hakeem al-Araibi leaves the criminal court in Bangkok, Thailand. A Thai court on Monday, Feb. 11, 2019, has ordered the release of al-Araibi after prosecutors said they were no longer seeking his extradition to Bahrain. (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit, File)

BANGKOK — A Thai court ordered the release of a refugee soccer player on Monday after prosecutors said they were no longer seeking his extradition to Bahrain in a case that had drawn worldwide attention.

Thai court sets extradition hearing of Bahraini footballer for April

Thai court sets extradition hearing of Bahraini footballer for April Jailed Bahraini footballer Hakeem Al Araibi, who fled political upheaval in the Middle East nation and has refugee status in Australia, will spend at least two more months in prison in Thailand after a court set an extradition hearing for April. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.

Thai prosecutors have submitted a request in court for Thailand to extradite to Bahrain a detained soccer player who has refugee status in Australia.

BANGKOK — Thai prosecutors submitted a request in court Friday for Thailand to extradite to Bahrain a detained soccer player who has refugee status in Australia. Hakeem al -Araibi, a former player on Bahrain 's national team

Court spokesman Suriyan Hongvilai said that Hakeem al-Araibi, who lives and plays professional soccer in Australia, was being processed for release.

Prosecutors on Monday submitted to court a request to withdraw the case to extradite al-Araibi to Bahrain, where he faces a 10-year prison sentence for an arson attack that damaged a police station. He has denied those charges and says the case is politically motivated.

Prosecutors made the decision after Thailand's foreign ministry sent their department a letter Monday morning that indicated that Bahrain had withdrawn its request for al-Araibi, said Chatchom Akapin, the director general of the attorney general office's international affairs department

Officials in Bahrain, an island kingdom off the coast of Saudi Arabia that's home to the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet, did not immediately respond to a request for comment Monday.

The state-run Bahrain News Agency reported Sunday that Prime Minister Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa had a phone call with Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha, but offered no specifics on their discussions.

Separately, BNA said Bahrain's Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa met Sunday with Thailand's foreign minister who was visiting the island. Again, no specifics on their talks was offered.

MLS extends commissioner Garber's contract through 2023.
Major League Soccer Commissioner Don Garber's contract has been extended by league owners for five years through 2023.Garber's previous contract expired at the end of 2018. He was hired in August 1999 to succeed Doug Logan, MLS's first commissioner. Garber, 61, spent 15 years with the NFL. He was senior vice president of its international division when he was recruited for MLS by Robert Kraft and Lamar Hunt, owners of teams in both leagues. Garber was inducted into the U.S. National Soccer Hall of Fame last year.

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