A medical expert in the Asylum Network of Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) provided key testimony contributing to a significant ruling in Ohio last month in which a federal judge held that a former Somali security official was responsible for ordering the arrest and torture of a Somali law professor more than 20 years ago.
For victims fleeing torture or persecution, gaining the sanctuary of asylum in the US often requires rigorous science-based assessment, experts said at a two-day training workshop at AAAS.
Christy Fujio, Asylum Program Director at PHR, expresses concern in a recent Lancet article at reports emerging from Iran indicating the government is denying medical care to political prisoners. “The Iranian Government wants to break peoples' spirits, they want to set an example”, she said. “They do this overtly through torture, but they also do it more subtly by denying care and allowing people to suffer from their injuries.”
At a Congressional hearing yesterday, Republican committee members attempted to portray immigration detention as a “vacation” for undocumented immigrants. “Nobody who has spent even a minute in an immigration detention facility would characterize it as a ‘holiday,’” said PHR's Christy Fujio “Detention center conditions are often worse a criminal jail. Nobody wants to be there.”
Still Waiting for Tomorrow: The Law and Politics of Unresolved Refugee Crises (pdf), a conference in Boston that will explore the scope and consequences of global refugee crises as well as potential policy responses to these crises, will feature PHR experts.