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Australia denies issuing arrest warrant for Bahraini refugee footballer

IANS  |  Canberra 

Australian authorities on Friday dismissed Thailand's claim that it has issued the Red Notice for the arrest of Bahraini refugee Hakeem al-Araibi, presently detained in

The on Thursday suggested al-Araibi was arrested on arrival in in November 2018 after it "received the Red Notice alert from the Australian Interpol", reports

Responding to the assertion, Australia's embassy in issued a statement to "clear up confusion regarding the Interpol Red Notice issued against Hakeem al-Araibi", saying issued the Red Notice, which is a form of international arrest warrant.

"never issued a Red Notice against al-Araibi. This Red Notice was issued by on November 8, 2018, shortly before al-Araibi travelled to Bangkok," the statement said.

"The Red Notice should never have been issued because of al-Araibi's status as a protected refugee. This was a breach of Interpol's regulations.

"When the became aware of the situation, we ensured the red notice was rescinded as soon as possible. This happened on November 30, only three days after al-Araibi arrived in

"The has said unequivocally on many occasions that al-Araibi should be returned to Australia, where he is a permanent resident with protected status, as soon as possible, the statement added.

Al-Araibi, a former member of Bahrain's national football team, fled his home country for in 2014 after he was accused of vandalising a police station.

He was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment in absentia and has applied to for his extradition so that he can serve the sentence.

Speaking in where he was refused bail on Monday, al-Araibi said he fears he will be tortured if returned to Bahrain.

Australian has written to his Thai counterpart asking for al-Araibi's immediate release twice.

said the government was doing everything in its power to return al-Araibi to

The extradition trial will return to court on April 22.



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, February 08 2019. 09:46 IST