Palestinian photo journalist wins UK visa approval in third application

13 Jun 2016 |
A Palestinian photo journalist has been given the go-ahead to visit Britain after twice being turned down for a UK visa.
Hamde Abu Rahma will now come to Scotland to show his work and talk about his experiences living in Palestine.
His first two visa applications were rejected after the authorities said they were not satisfied he was a genuine visitor and would return home at the end of the trip to the UK. Concerns were also raised about the way Mr Abu Rahma would fund his visit.
However, his UK visa has finally been approved after he again provided financial information to UK Visas and Immigration – data he said he had already sent. The Network of Photographers for Palestine (NOPFP) has raised more than £2,500 to pay for the trip, accommodation and his living expenses while he is in the UK.
Mr Abu Rahma, who put together a video highlighting the problems he had faced getting a UK visa, was also supported by Edinburgh East MP Tommy Sheppard.
The photo journalist is known for his criticism of the Israeli government and its treatment of what he called ‘occupied Palestine’. He is coming to Scotland to show pictures from his book Roots Run Deep and discuss living in Palestine.
He had been due to bring his work to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival last year but his visa application was rejected on financial grounds, even though the festival was sponsoring the planned visit.
He is now due to bring his work to the Solas Festival in Perth, The Herald reported.

Mr Abu Rahma said: "Today I am happy to say, that there are still many people who care about the Palestinians and support our case and our right for freedom. I want to send my special thanks to those who worked really hard to help me."