A while after the war started I received a letter, being asked to join the army. Straightaway my father bribed the local military authorities, postponing my military service for one year. The situation was very difficult in Syria; sometimes I was struggling to find a bottle of milk for my daughter. After discussing with my father we decided that I should leave Syria and find a safer place. In 2015 I left Syria and I walked towards Turkey, crossing the border illegally. My wish was to reach a European country. After 7 days I found an agent who helped me travel from Turkey to South Africa. The last step of my journey was to fly from South Africa to the United Kingdom. I didn’t even know that I was travelling to the UK, I couldn’t read English so I had no idea what it was written on my flight ticket. When I arrived I had to ask where I am and I found out that I was in London. I can say I am lucky because my father could support me with money. I had a safe journey but there are a lot of Syrian people that have to go through horrible things before they reach a safe place. The only reason to leave Syria was the fact that I couldn’t afford or find food for my daughter. I could stay in Syria with nothing to eat but I couldn’t let that happen to my child. This is why I decided to come to Europe.

Unfortunately my family is still in Syria. After I received my Residence Permit in the UK, I applied for visas (family reunion) for my wife and my daughter. After one month and a half of waiting the UK Border Agency refused me. They argued their decision with the lack of photographs of me with my family. They considered that I couldn’t prove that they are my real family, but all our family photographs are still in Syria.

Date of Birth: 15/09/2011 Nationality: SYRIAN
The Decision: Apart from a birth certificate you have not submitted any evidence in support of your application to show that you were or are in a relationship with your sponsor. I am therefore not satisfied that you have been part of a family unit of your father at the time he left his country of his habitual residence in order to seek asylum.

Date of Birth: 10/01/1990 Nationality: SYRIAN
The Decision: The only evidence submitted in support of your application is a copy of your wedding certificate and your daughter’s birth certificate. There is nothing to show that you are in a genuine and loving relationship with your sponsor despite you stating you are in daily contact with him. Taking everything into account, I am therefore not satisfied that you intend to live permanently with your sponsor of that your marriage is subsisting… There is no evidence that there is any family life but if there is, it can continue in the manner it has done until now.