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Stop UK universities from expelling Syrian students!

Stop UK universities from expelling Syrian students!


Why this is important

670 Syrian students currently study in UK higher education institutions. Many have been threatened by their universities with immediate expulsion – some have already been expelled – if either they or their sponsors can no longer pay for their tuition fees, due to the conflict in Syria. Syrian students in that case would then lose their student visas and their right to work, leaving them in impossible situations.

Also, at least 100 Syrian PhD students in the UK are sponsored by the Syrian Government under the British Council's Capacity Building Scheme, and their funding and maintenance payments have been stopped by the Syrian authorities. This has left these students in limbo as they may not be allowed to complete their studies.

The lives of these 670 Syrian students are threatened – those who would lose their UK visas would be forced to return to Syria. And if they are suspected of taking part in protests against Assad's government, they could face detention, torture and even assassination at the hands of the Syrian regime.

The Foreign Secretary William Hague can ensure that Syrian students are able to continue their studies in the UK, including those who have already been expelled – like he did for the Libyan students affected by the conflict in 2011. Let's call on Hague and Vince Cable, Minister for Business, Innovation and Skills together with the Universities Minister David Willetts and his colleagues in Scotland - asking them to do the same for Syrian students. Please sign and share this petition widely!

Posted January 10, 2013
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