Swansea Gives Support To Iraqi Family

Trifa Sedeeq, with brother Aram Faraj and her three children.

An Iraqi family facing deportation after making a treacherous journey to Swansea, has received a positive response from the city.

A couple of weeks ago we broke the story of an Iraqi family in Swansea who are facing deportation.

So far, more than 1,200 people have signed a petition trying to stop that from happening.

Trifa Sedeeq will find out next week whether the appeal to keep her and her three children - who are living with family in Swansea - has been successful.

In 2015, Trifa Sedeeq and her three children thought the worst of it was over after joining her brother, Aram Faraj, in Swansea to start a new life.

She and her husband left Iraq with their children and another of her brother's family to make the long journey to a migrant camp on the Bulgarian border.

Freezing and starving, Trifa's husband, brother and sister-in-law all died, leaving her alone with her own three children and her four nieces and nephews.

She managed to get them to safety and from there, her other brother Aram Faraj was able to collect them and take them to his home in Swansea.

While the four orphans have now been told they can stay for the next two and a half years, Trifa and her three children are facing deportation.

Rachel Matthews, Project Manager at Bloom in Swansea said, "What they have been through is horrendous.

"The four year old was held hostage for a month in Bulgaria, they all had frost bitten feet and hands, and then three of the four parents who were travelling with the seven children, froze to death."

"These children have been through so much and they need to stay together.

"The home office have given the four orphaned children two and a half years leave to remain.

"But, Trifa and her children are facing being sent back to Iraq.

"Trifa and her eldest son are suffering with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of this.

"They were doing really well, but it's horrible to see how far back this has taken them again.

Bloom is a project at Red Cafe in Swansea works to support refugees in the city.

Ms Matthews told us there are hundreds of immigrants in a similar position to Trifa and her children but the family's story is one that has struck a chord with the people of Swansea.

"We've set up an online petition to take to court to show there is public support.

"I've put photos and videos up of the family on our Facebook page - Bloom Swansea - which have received a lot of positivity.

"It's really nice for the family to see these nice messages of support online from people who wants them to stay in Swansea.

"These children did not chose to come here, they came because their parents made that decision to take them to safety.

"They have seen some horrendous things and been through so much, they deserve to live a happy, safe life, just as much as anyone else."

Ms Matthews goes to Cardiff on the 18th April with Trifa to appeal the decision to have the family deported. 

They also have the support of South Wales West AM Bethan Jenkins. 

She's calling on people to do what they can to support Trifa and her children:, "They are vulnerable people. 

"They are seeking support for the trauma they had in coming to the UK and I have been active in helping them along the way.

"They do have the right to appeal and I'm speaking to the solicitor of the family and helping them to ensure they can stay here. 

"I would urge all local citizens of Swansea to support them and try and stop them from being deported."

Find out more on the campaign page here.

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