Iraqi Chooses Sanctuary In The U.S. Over Deportation

Attorney Rebecca Kitson and Justin Remer-Thamert with the NM Faith Coalition for Immigrant Justice stand with Courtney Albumohammed, daughter of Kadhim Albumohammed.

  • Sarah Trujillo
  • Thursday, July 13, 2017

An Iraqi man chose to seek refuge in a church in Albuquerque today rather than report for deportation.

Supporters rallied for Kadhim Albumohammed who was scheduled to report to Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Now, a local church is providing him sanctuary. His teenage daughter Courtney was stoked.

“I just think it’s amazing that all these people care and they’re here. These people that don’t even know him,” she said. “But he’s okay now, so I’m okay. When he’s okay, I’m okay.”

Her father worked for the U.S. military for five years and said he fears retaliation if he is sent back to Iraq. It was the second time people gathered to protest his deportation orders and his lawyer Rebecca Kitson said they’ve told ICE where he is.

“It’s because of you that we’ve had the strength to move forward and to resist against his unjust detention,” Kitson said.

Protestors marched around Immigration and Customs Enforcement Building.
Credit Sarah Trujillo via KUNM

Iraq struck a deal with the Trump Administration to be taken off the travel ban list in exchange for accepting more than 1400 Iraqis who are to be deported because they have criminal records in the U.S.

KUNM’s Public Health New Mexico project is funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the McCune Charitable Foundation.

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