Chicago, Illinois. A blogger from Singapore who was jailed for online posts criticising his nation of birth’s government has been granted asylum to remain in the United States, a US immigration judge has ruled.
The Singaporian national is Amos Yee, 18, who has been detained by US federal immigration authorities since December when he was taken into custody at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport. Yee’s Attorneys said he could be released from a Wisconsin detention centre as early as Monday.
Immigration Judge Samuel Cole issued a 13-page decision on Friday, more than two weeks after Yee’s closed door hearing on the asylum application.The Judge in his ruling wrote: “Yee has met his burden of showing that he suffered past persecution on account of his political opinion and has a well-founded fear of future persecution in Singapore.”
Mr Yee left Singapore with the intent of seeking asylum in the US after being jailed for several weeks in 2015 and 2016. He was accused of insulting the religious feelings of Muslims and Christians in his homeland. Yee is himself an atheist.
Diplomatic officials at the Singapore embassy in Washington DC have not addressed the case and messages left for the government on in Singapore were not immediately returned.