Zahra escaped a collapsed building

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PAOV — Zahra Alshwikkh is a 56-year-old Syrian refugee in Turkey who survived last week’s earthquake. The death toll from the earthquake is now over 40,000. Zahra managed to escape a building that completely collapsed in southeastern Turkey. Her sister has sponsored her to come to Canada and Zahra has already passed all of her security and medical checks — she just needs her Canadian travel documents. Her sister is on standby to purchase her ticket. In the meantime, Zahra has nowhere to sleep and is at risk. Sign now to urge Immigration Canada to process her documents immediately.

Save Earthquake Survivor & Refugee Zahra: Canada Must Urgently Issue Travel Documents NOW!

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Earthquake survivor Zahra Alshwikkh, a 56-year-old Syrian refugee, is approved to come to Canada. But unless Canada immediately issues her travel documents, her risk increases from the bitterly cold open air, a cholera outbreak, and other diseases in a devastated Turkiye. Zahra could have been killed, but was lucky to get out of a building that pancaked in Urfa, Turkiye (seen in a viral video). Zahra has nowhere to sleep.

Zahra’s Mississauga, Ontario sister successfully sponsored her. All of Zahra’s security and medical checks have been passed. Her file is completed. Zahra’s sister is on standby to purchase an airline ticket. All Zahra needs are Canadian travel documents.

Every moment Canada delays this simple issuance of travel documents increases Zahra’s risk.

On February 9, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser told Global News that Canada may fast-track applications to come to Canada from people in the earthquake zones of Turkey and Syria.

“We’re trying to understand what the impact is on the clients who are in the system,” he said. The impact on Zahra and others already waiting to come to Canada is clear. Many are already traumatized as refugees who fled the devastation of Syria. Forced into homelessness amidst the destruction of Turkiye is retraumatizing to Zahra and thousands of others.

A statement issued to CBC from Immigration Canada noted: "Canada is deeply concerned for the safety and well-being of those impacted by the earthquakes. We are watching the situation very closely and determining the best path forward.”

The best path forward for Zahra is simple, cost-free, and life saving: issue travel documents to her immediately. There is no reason to delay in her case or anyone else’s, especially when so many bound-for-Canada immigration files are similarly complete and just awaiting the final issuance of travel documents.

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