Singapore's infamous teen blogger Amos Yee granted US asylum
A teenage blogger from Singapore has been released from US custody following an immigration appeals court’s decision to uphold his bid for asylum.
Amos Yee, whose online posts mocking and criticising the Singapore Government twice landed him in jail there, left his homeland in December with the intention of seeking US asylum.
But federal immigration agents detained the 18-year-old at O’Hare International Airport and he had been behind bars since.
“I’m kind of stunned right now,” Me Yee said after leaving an Immigration and Customs Enforcement facility in Chicago.
“It’s very surreal.”
Mr Yee, an atheist, was accused of hurting the religious feelings of Muslims and Christians in Singapore.
Many of his explicit social media and blog entries criticised Singapore’s leaders, and he ignited controversy in 2015 after posting a fiery video about Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew just after his death.
His attorneys received notification of a Board of Immigration Appeals decision upholding a Chicago immigration judge’s March ruling that Yee had a “well-founded fear” of being persecuted upon return to Singapore.
The US Department of Homeland Security had opposed Mr Yee’s asylum bid, but the board determined the Chicago judge correctly relied on expert and witness testimony in asylum proceedings earlier this year.
His lawyers said he would be eligible for a green card in a year.