Saudi Princess Sara Bint Talal Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud¬† also known as the “Barbie” princess who is niece of country’s ruler seeks political asylum in UK after claiming she was ‘assaulted and persecuted by her own family’.

AFP News: A Saudi princess, the granddaughter of the nation’s founder, is seeking asylum in Britain over fears she could be persecuted by members of her family at home, the Sunday Telegraph reported.

Princess Sara bint Talal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, also known as the “Barbie” princess due to her pampered upbringing, said she had also applied to the Home Office for political asylum for her four daughters, according to the report.

“With deep regret, and as I have been left with no other choice, I have written to the UK Home Office to indicate that I, and my children, wish to be granted political asylum,” she said in a statement.

“My reputation has been besmirched in the media by a baseless and malicious smear campaign.

Princess Sara Bint Talal Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud

Princess Sara said she wants to stay in the UK as she has been assaulted, threatened and persecuted by her family and members of the Saudi authorities

The divorced princess currently lives in London after moving to Britain in 2007 following a falling-out with her 80-year-old father prince Talal bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud.

It is the first time such a claim has been made by a senior member of the ruling family.

Sara, 38, believes senior Saudi officials plotted to have her kidnapped and brought back to Riyadh and claims they subjected her to a “well orchestrated and malicious campaign of persecution”.

“I’ve been physically abused,” she told the newspaper. “They’ve accused me of being in opposition (to them) with Iran. I am very scared right now.”

Her passport expired two years after arriving in Britain, and she is now facing deportation as her visa has also run out.

Britain has to decide if her claims are valid and risk sparking a diplomatic spat by accepting her request. More at AFP News