Two sisters say they are “relieved but worried” after they narrowly avoided being deported to Pakistan where they say they face the threat of LGBT-based violence.
Samina, 52, and Nazia Iqbal, 48, from Stockport, were scheduled to be taken out of the country on Saturday night from Manchester airport after a judge said it was not “credible” that they are gay [sic], despite the sisters being publicly out for 20 years.
The pair were due to leave on a flight at 9pm on Saturday back to Pakistan but after being questioned by Sky News the Home Office appeared to make a U-turn on the decision as the sisters were not put on the plane.
When contacted by Sky News to ask why the sisters were being deported a spokesperson said that “each case is considered on its merits”.
The Iqbal sisters were not told they would not be put on the flight and only realised they were not leaving when Sky News informed them that the plane had taken off.
The following day the pair were moved to the Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre, which has been criticised over treatment of detainees, something the Home Office has previously said has been improved upon.
The pair are now in limbo awaiting a bail hearing on Tuesday.