I had a commenter here who questioned the validity of the information contained in my previous post, where I quoted a letter I had received. Since I am not at liberty to tell everyone from where I received that release, I am putting in a link to an article in today’s Toronto Star (Saturday, March 10) which says essentially the same thing:
Detained family at risk in Iran: Report
U.S. asylum review says refugee claims credible
Mar 10, 2007 04:30 AM
A U.S. government report has agreed with Amnesty International’s contention that a Canadian-born boy and his Iranian refugee parents, held in a Texas jail, could face persecution and torture if they’re not given asylum by Ottawa.
Kevin Yourdkhani, 9, has been held at an immigration detention centre in Taylor, Texas, since Feb. 4, along with his father Majid and mother Masomeh Alibegi. The family had been deported to Iran and were trying to fly back to Canada when U.S. officials caught them carrying fake passports during an unscheduled landing in Puerto Rico.
“It’s a Canadian child and he has the right to come to Canada. If Canadian officials don’t make a decision soon, that means Kevin and his family will continue to be kept in a medium-security prison,” noted Andrew Brouwer, the family’s lawyer. “It’s deeply unfair to Kevin. It’s disappointing that Immigration is just sitting on the case.”
The boy is suffering an eye infection, eczema, asthma and what appears to be a bad cold or flu, according to the facility’s doctor, Brouwer said. Critics have said the centre houses families in jail-like conditions, with long waits for medical care and threats of separating children from their parents.
The boy’s supporters in Canada are awaiting a response from Immigration Minister Diane Finley on his parents’ application for a temporary resident permit, and on an appeal to her to let them stay in Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds.
A 12-page independent assessment by two U.S. asylum review officers, released yesterday, concluded the family has a “credible fear of persecution” and that there’s a “significant possibility” their refugee claim could be found credible in a full hearing. The report concurs with findings in an Amnesty International review of the case.
Kevin’s parents first sought refuge in Toronto in 1995. A decade later, after Kevin’s birth here, their refugee bid was denied and they were sent back. They claim they were tortured and had to flee again.
My earlier post referenced:
URGENT UPDATE RE: KEVIN (Canadian child in Texas prison)
This entry was posted on Saturday, March 10th, 2007 at 4:02 am
The comment questioning the letter quoted in my post:
Where’s the link to the news story? I don’t see anything here except what looks like a letter. But truth to tell, it could be a forgery.
So all those out there who are questioning the validity of my post or Kevin and his parents’ plight, rest assured that what I had written was the truth.