Rejected by US, Accepted by Canada: 'I'm Finally Home'

Refugee who lost all his fingers on trek north will be able to stay in Canada
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 19, 2017 3:53 AM CDT
Refugee Who Lost Fingers to Frostbite Allowed to Stay
Seidu Mohammed smiles as he speaks about his refugee claim acceptance in Winnipeg, Manitoba, on Thursday.   (John Woods/The Canadian Press via AP)

A Ghanaian refugee who lost all his fingers to frostbite after his Christmas Eve journey to Canada wept with joy after learning he would not be sent back to his homeland, where he fears persecution for being bisexual. Canada's refugee board has accepted the asylum claim of Seidu Mohammed, 24, who spent more than seven hours walking through snow in freezing temperatures to get to Manitoba from North Dakota last year, the CBC reports. His refugee claim was denied in the US after he arrived in 2015 and he feared being deported or returned to immigration detention under the Trump administration. He would have been sent back at a border crossing, so he made the dangerous trek to claim asylum on Canadian soil.

"I'm so happy. I don't know what to say. Now I'm home, I'm finally home now," Mohammed said after his claim was accepted this week. Another man who made the trek with him and has only thumbs left on both hands is still waiting for a decision in his case. Mohammed's immigration lawyer, Bashir Khan, says his client is a "true Canadian at heart" who hopes to contribute to society. "He was inspired by Canadian values from the first day he entered Canada," Khan tells the Winnipeg Free Press. "He's going to contribute a lot." (These Syrian refugees named their baby Justin Trudeau.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.