Hakeem al-Araibi could be jailed in Thailand until August, official says

Hakeem al-Araibi could be jailed in Thailand until August, official says

Hakeem al-Araibi could be jailed in Thailand until August, official says

Trumph Jalichandra, who is also a deputy secretary-general of the Office of the Attorney-General, said his office received a request from the Bahraini government through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Dec 3 a year ago for the extradition of Hakeem al-Araibi, who fled criminal charges related to the 2011 Arab Spring protests against Bahrain's government.

Thailand's handling of the case has also been criticised by Football Federation Australia who has cancelled a scheduled training session in Thailand for the national under-23 team.

Thailand has laid the blame for the arrest of refugee footballer Hakeem al-Araibi squarely at the feet of Australia, saying he was detained at its request.

In his first letter, Morrison called for Thailand to send al-Araibi back to Australia.

Australia's ambassador to Thailand, who appeared at the court Monday with AlAraibi, said in a statement that Bahrain had never requested AlAraibi's extradition in the four years he has lived in Australia.

Australia's Home Affairs office confirmed in December that federal police had advised Thai authorities a person with a red notice was on the way to Thailand, but did not say if the bureau was aware al-Araibi had refugee status.

Hakeem al-Araibi leaves the criminal court in Bangkok.

He was arrested in Thailand on November 27 while on holiday and on Monday was shown arriving at court in leg restraints, shouting "Don't send me to Bahrain".

The FFA rethink comes as the football world, including global stars Didier Drogba, Jamie Vardy and Giorgio Chiellini, rally behind Al-Araibi.

Bahrain wants to extradite him to serve a prison sentence over a conviction for vandalism, which authorities claim took place when he was actually playing in a televised football match.

"Indeed, we would not have become involved in the issue had we not received the red notice alert from the Australian Interpol and the subsequent formal request by Bahrain for his arrest and extradition".

Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Marise Payne urged Thai authorities to use their discretion.

Former Australia national soccer team captain Craig Foster, who has been lobbying for al-Araibi's release, shouted words of encouragement to the jailed player.

It said the footballer would have the chance to appeal in its own domestic courts.

"I'm respectfully reminding the Thai prime minister that Australians feel very strongly about this, very, very strongly".

While his lawyer is seeking bail for al-Araibi, the public prosecutors yesterday said they would oppose bail, citing flight risk.

"We are in the process of rearranging our pre-tournament camp in another Asian nation", he said.

The 25-year-old fears being returned to Bahrain where he believes he could face imprisonment and torture.

The FFA wrote in a statement on Wednesday: "Australia's national teams are united in their support for Hakeem al-Araibi".

"Mr al-Araibi, as with defendants in all criminal cases in Bahrain, is guaranteed full legal rights and protections with full access to proper representation", it said in a statement on Wednesday.

He added the court will take up to three months to complete al-Araibi's extradition case, meaning he will be in Thai custody "at least until August".

And I'd simply say this, it is within the executive authority of the Thai government to actually enable him under their law to be returned to Australia.

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