Refugee who lost fingers gets to stay in Canada

Immigration officials grant refugee status to Ghanaians who almost froze to death crossing out of US to Manitoba in winter

Refugee who lost fingers gets to stay in Canada

World Bulletin / News Desk

A refugee from Ghana who lost his fingers to frostbite walking into Canada from the United States in freezing temperatures learned Tuesday he has been granted refugee status in Canada.

“I thank God that I’ve been accepted to stay in Canada, to be a Canadian,” Razak Iyal, 35, said after his private session with the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Board.

“And what I have in me, I’ll make sure I share it with the community, with the people,” he said, as reported by CTV News.

The board agreed with Iyal that his five siblings wanted to kill him for an inheritance and he could be murdered if he was forced to return to his home country.

“If I go back to Ghana, I might lose all my life,” he said. “But here I am, I just lost my fingers, but I am still part of the society.”

Iyal and his friend, Seidu Mohammed, had their refugee claims for asylum rejected in the U.S. and were afraid of being deported after U.S. President Donald Trump took office.

On Christmas Eve, the pair took a bus to Grand Forks, North Dakota after leaving Minnesota, and then a taxi to a nearby location along the U.S. border with the Canadian province of Manitoba.

The temperature was -30 C (-22 F) as they walked through snowy fields. After hours of wandering, they were spotted and picked up by a trucker crossing into Canada.

They spent weeks in a hospital and Mohammed losing all his fingers while Iyal lost all but his thumbs.

“I can do a lot of things that people who have fingers can do,” he said. He told CTV he wanted to bring his wife to Canada from Ghana and open an electronics business like he had in Ghana.

Still, it added to the danger he faced in returning home, he said.

 

Güncelleme Tarihi: 14 Haziran 2017, 08:21
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