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  1. ITV Report

Passport delays stop woman who fled Yemen flying home with husband and children

Safia Saleh was just eighteen months old when her father abducted her and her sisters. She now has four children of her own. Credit: Jackie Saleh

The Welsh family of a woman born in Cardiff but who has lived nearly all her life in Yemen hope that she will finally be able to return to Wales in the next few days. Safia Saleh fled the war-torn state on the Arabian peninsula with her husband and children after a crowd-funding campaign raised the money to fly them to Egypt.

She and her four children are entitled to British passports but they've not yet been issued by the Embassy in Cairo. Her husband, who's a Yemeni national, is applying for a visa to enter the UK.

Since Safia was snatched from her, Jackie Saleh has seen her for just 15 minutes. Credit: ITV News Cymru Wales

Safia's mother, Jackie Saleh, has been hoping for to be reunited with her youngest daughter for nearly 33 years, after her estranged husband abducted their baby when she was just eighteen months old. He also took Safia's two older sisters to Yemen. Once they had grown up and married they invited their mother to visit them but they were only able to arrange a fleeting visit to Safia at her school. It lasted just 15 minutes.

The older sisters even came to Cardiff to see their mother again but returned to Yemen, where one of them died in childbirth and the other still lives. The country is now in the midst of a bitter civil war that's made the lives of its mostly impoverished people even worse.

Safia with the three eldest of her four children. She's now now waiting in Cairo for the passports and visas that would allow her and her family,m including her Yemeni husband to travel to Wales. Credit: Jackie Saleh

Jackie's other daughter, Lucy, says the family is hoping that a case manager that they've appointed in London can help her relatives stranded in Cairo through the paperwork and online application process that's proved daunting for people with little knowledge of English.