The teenager barricaded herself in her hotel room at Bangkok airport at the weekend after she said her passport was confiscated by a Saudi official who planned to forcibly return her to her family, whom she fears will kill her. "My life is in danger".
The Head of the Thai Immigration Service, Swartzat Hakparn, told reporters that "the morning flight was via Kuwait Airways to bring her back to Saudi Arabia".
"If she prefers to travel to Australia, we will coordinate with the (Australian) embassy for her".
Photos released on Monday night by immigration police showed Ms Alqunun with Thai and United Nations officials after she left the airport transit hotel room where she had been holed up over the weekend, sending her pleas for help on her Twitter account. She said she had been beaten and male relatives had threatened to kill her. Her story has also put Saudi Arabia's restrictive guardianship laws, which govern many aspects of women's lives, back under global scrutiny.
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Abuse by her family was one of the reasons Alqunun cited for fleeing.
The immigration police released photos of Surachate and his team sitting down with Saudi embassy charge d'affaires Abdulilah al-Shouaibi.
HRW's Robertson said Qunun "faces grave harm if she is forced back to Saudi Arabia".
Saudi Arabia has denied claims that it intervened at the airport and has said she should be returned to her family, arguing that they fear for her safety.
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Maj. Gen. Surachate Hakparn says that after the father of Rahaf Mohammed Alqunun arrives, officials will see what happens and whether or not she will want to go back with him.
She later barricaded herself in the room she was being detained and used Twitter to plea for help, saying she would be killed if she were deported to Saudi Arabia.
In Australia, a senator, Sarah Hanson-Young, called on her government, through social media, to issue Qunun an emergency travel document so she could fly to Australia to seek asylum.
Saudi woman Rahaf Mohammed Al-qunun is greeted by Thai immigration authorities at a hotel inside Suvarnabhumi.
In response, the Australia director at Human Rights Watch, Elaine Pearson told the Guardian, "if the visa has been cancelled it would be very concerning". Legally, Saudi women must have a male guardian to function within their society, making it hard for them to escape abusive situations from male family members or husbands. "She had a passport but no return ticket, no travel plan, and no destination or hotel reservation in Thailand.so per airport security procedures, immigration denied her entry". She fled her family from Saudi Arabia and arrived in Thailand but she didn't have necessary documents to enter.
A law firm trying to prevent the deportation from Thailand of a Saudi woman seeking to go to Australia to get asylum to escape from an allegedly abusive family says a Thai court has turned down its request for an injunction.
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