FIFA called on Friday for Bahraini footballer Hakim Al-Oraibi, who is being detained in Thailand, to be returned to Australia.
Al-Oraibi was detained upon arriving at Thailand’s Bangkok Airport on 27 November. He has since been waiting for a local court to decide whether he should be deported to his country of origin, Bahrain, Al Khaleej Online reported.
FIFA’s call came in response to an announcement by Thai authorities that the footballer was being detained at the request of Bahrain. Al-Oraibi has been living in Australia, where he applied for political asylum.
“He must be returned back to Australia as soon as possible,” FIFA said.
The chief of Thailand’s Immigration Police said that the footballer’s detention is legal because it was made at the request of his country.
Last week, Al-Oraibi leaked a video he recorded from inside his cell in Thai capital Bangkok, complaining about his detention conditions and appealing against being returned to Bahrain, fearing he would go to prison.