Thu. Jun 13th, 2024

Palestinian student in UK who was ‘full of pride’ over Hamas attacks stripped of visa

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun3,2024

A Palestinian law student from the University of Manchester claims the Home Office has revoked her student visa. She claims it has done so on grounds of “national security” following remarks she made during a protest last year.

Dana Abuqamar, 19, sparked widespread outrage last October when she appeared to praise Hamas‘ October 7 attacks on southern Israel. Ms Abuqamar attended a pro-Palestine protest just one day after the brutal attack which killed more than 1,160 people.

At the rally, she told a Sky News reporter that she was “full of pride” after Hamas launched the surprise assault. The 19-year-old, who also leads the Manchester Friends of Palestine, was filmed saying she was “really full of joy” and “proud that Palestinian resistance has come to this point”.

At the time policing minister Chris Philip publicly blasted the remarks as “sick”.

Days after the interview, Ms Abuqamar told the BBC that her words had been “misrepresented” and that the deaths of any “innocent civilian should not be condoned, ever”.

She also revealed that 15 of her relatives in Gaza had been killed in an Israeli missile strike on a residential building. Ms Abuqamar has pledged to fight the Home Office decision and confirmed she would appeal.

The Home Office said it does not comment on individual cases and it remains unclear precisely what revoking the visa means for the future of the teenager, who is in her final year of university.

The student told Middle East Eye that her remarks had been “taken out of context,” and rebuked the Home Office’s claim that she was a “risk to public safety” as a “completely baseless” and “outrageous” accusation.

She said that before coming to Britain she believed freedom of expression was “a fundamental human right that’s cherished here”.

But, now, she feels that this right does “not apply to ethnic minorities, particularly Muslims and Palestinians like myself”.

She said: “We must reject the double standard in the application of human rights by public authorities and rise against this oppression.”

On Thursday, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak condemned the pro-Palestinian encampments that have popped up at several universities across the country.

He said: “A vocal minority on our campuses are disrupting the lives and studies of their fellow students and, in some cases, propagating outright harassment and anti-Semitic abuse. That has to stop.”

The PM urged university bosses to take a zero-tolerance approach to discrimination on student campuses and announced half a million pounds in funding for the University Jewish Chaplaincy service to provide welfare services to Jewish students.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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One thought on “Palestinian student in UK who was ‘full of pride’ over Hamas attacks stripped of visa”
  1. Was the decision to revoke her visa fair considering her clarification that her words were misinterpreted?

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