Amos Yee is currently still being detained in a detention center in Chicago, despite the ruling by Immigration Judge Samuel Cole granting the teenager asylum on Friday (24th March).
The 18-year-old has been detained since 16th December 2016 upon his arrival at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, in the United States of America (US).
TR Emeritus (TRE) understands that prior to him being granted asylum, Amos’s status was an “asylum seeker”, hence it is normal and within reasons for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to detain him pending assessment and hearing.
However, upon Judge Cole’s ruling, Amos’s status has been changed to one of “refugee”, which has rights both under US domestic law and UN refugee rights.
If and only if Amos’s status is changed at the upcoming appeal, he is eligible for release and ought to be released.
Why then is he still being detained?
According to Mr Phil Robertson, Deputy Asia Director of Human Rights Watch, it could be the result of the “climate of fear created by President Donald Trump’s abusive policies”.
Sadly, it appears Amos has become a hostage to the climate of fear generated by Donald Trump’s abusive policies towards refugees and migrants, and the knee-jerk tightening of practices at U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in response to the new President’s executive orders.
Even the lawyer who represents Amos on a pro-bono basis was surprised and commented that she “in 10 years she has never heard of this”.
“I’ve never heard of another case where someone has been granted asylum and has not been released, even if the government appeals” the court’s ruling – a right that ICE had not yet exercised or waived.
- Ms Grossman’s interview with CSMonitor.
According to Mr Kenneth Jeyaretnam who testified at Amos’s asylum hearing, he is surprised that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is even considering an appeal.
It’s hard to see how or on what grounds as the judgement was so comprehensive and so damning on many different issues.
In fact the lawyers at Grossman were surprised that Amos’ pleas would be opposed in the first place.
Why is ICE making things so difficult for Amos?
The teenage blogger could have been released after his initial assessment by an asylum official, but he was not. Amos could have been released pending his asylum hearing, but he was not. Even after his asylum was granted, Amos should have been released pending an upcoming appeal, but he was not.
Why so, why is ICE making things so difficult for Amos, a supposedly weak and harmless teenager?
Could it be that they (ICE) were suffering from a weak-knee syndrome due to the executive orders issued by the ‘the most powerful and richest man on Earth’ and therefore dare not risk their rice-bowl?
Could it be that they were instructed to do so after a certain ‘most powerful and filthy rich man in the most expensive city on Earth’ made a call to ‘the most powerful and richest man on Earth’?
Or maybe they are just buying time and toying with Amos to hopefully wear him down mentally, forcing him to so something stupid so that they can use that as an excuse to revoke his right to stay in US, during the appeal?
What do you think?
P/S: Mary, the teenager’ mother has not heard from Amos since he was granted asylum. According to Mr Kenneth, Amos has a routine of calling her mother from prison often. Phone card no funds, need to top up or kenna solitary again?
Update 30th March @ 0100 hours: Although Amos continues to be detained, it appears that no appeal has been lodged with the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) aka United States Immigration Courts.