Iranian beauty queen granted refugee status
Evelyn Macairan (The Philippine Star) - November 9, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Justice (DOJ) has granted refugee status to Iranian beauty queen Bahareh Zare Bahari, who has been staying at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 3 since Oct. 17.

Bahari, 31, earlier filed a petition for asylum with the Refugee and Stateless Persons Protection Unit (RSPPU) of the DOJ.

 “You are hereby informed that you are recognized as a refugee under the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and its 1967 Protocol,” the DOJ order read.

The RSPPU provided Bahari with a refugee identification card.

The DOJ also informed the Bureau of Immigration (BI) that Bahari has been granted refugee status.

The BI was instructed by the DOJ to waive her Alien Certificate of Registration card and other immigration fees.

The RPPSU also recommended to the Department of Foreign Affairs the issuance of a travel document to Bahari if she requires it.

If she will look for employment here, the RSPPU can provide Bahari with a work permit from the Department of Labor and Employment. 

Bahari was Iran’s representative in the 2018 Miss International pageant held in Manila. She is studying dentistry in the Philippines.

She was prevented from entering the country upon her arrival from Dubai on Oct. 17 due to an Interpol red notice for allegedly assaulting a fellow Iranian.

Bahari, however, claimed it was a trumped-up charge.

She said she is being targeted by the Iranian government for her political views.              

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