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Saudi Arabia and Canada Diplomatic Feud Causes Students to Return Home

Aug 31, 2018

Saudi Arabia and Canada Diplomatic Feud Causes Students to Return Home

After the criticism of Saudi Arabia’s human record on twitter from the Canadian foreign minister Chrystia Freeland, Saudi Arabia announced their intention to withdraw all Saudi students on scholarships in Canada. This diplomatic feud between Saudi Arabia and Canada and it’s still on going and about 8,000 Saudi students studying in Canada have to leave the country by August 31.

According to reports from the business insider, ‘Freeland had been responding to the news that the Saudi government arrested several activists, including the sister of a Canadian citizen. In response, Saudi Arabia expelled the Canadian ambassador, frozen all new investment, and canceled all flights to Toronto. Neither country is willing to back down, with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau saying on Thursday that his government is continuing to "engage diplomatically" with Saudi Arabia, but that he is "concerned" after news broke that a Saudi woman is facing a death sentence for her political activism. Canadian universities have been trying to support their Saudi students in wake of the new policy. Five universities said on Wednesday that the Saudi trainee doctors enrolled in their programs had been granted an extra three weeks in the country, and can stay until September 22, according to Reuters. The University of Toronto's vice-provost for international student experience, Joseph Wong, also said in a statement: "This is a very stressful time for these students. Their studies have been interrupted, and we want to help them to continue their education; so we will be working with them, our colleagues at other universities and with government officials, as the situation continues to evolve."

The reports from the business insider furthered to state that ‘The Ummah Mosque and community center in Halifax, Nova Scotia, held two garage sales on August 12 and August 17 to help students to help the students sell their belongings. Imam Abdullah Yousri, who runs the mosque, said he decided to hold the sales when he saw so many students were trying to get rid of their stuff online. He told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation: "They're selling their cars, their homes, and their furniture— everything. So we thought this is the best way to help them to do so." He added on the Facebook event page for one of the garage sales: "Such garage sale is open for all the community but especially our Saudi student brethren to assist them in the sale of their belongings."

The first garage according to the report stated that it was a successful garage sale and another one was held for the students to sell their cars since they can’t take them back with them to their country. The students were however sad although they had no options but to sell and go back home till this feud is resolved. ‘One student selling a 2018 Nissan Rogue S on Facebook in Ontario said he was "an unfortunate Saudi Student who is been forced to leave Canada due to the clash with Saudi Arabia. Another stated that ‘when I have purchased this car, it meant to be my everlasting but sometimes you have no option. It is still like-new brand car, everything is awesome and perfect," he added. "I have oil sprayed it this summer to be ready for the winter, but sadly I won't even stay for the fall!"

Other Saudi Arabian students are also selling their appliances like televisions, gadgets and the rest to get rid of them whereas others are using online sale platforms to get rid of their belongings.

Source: Business insider

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