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Are You Lucky Enough to Survive?

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            Is the situation getting better in Iraq? Is it safer now for those who worked for the U.S. forces and their families? Hearing nothing in the news about the bad situation in Iraq doesn’t mean it’s getting better! Those who helped the United States are still living in danger with their families, waiting for their applications to be processed and finalized. While waiting, they are subject to different kinds of threats.

           Mr. M, a73-year old Iraqi man suffering from Alzheimer’s, is one of those people whose cases have been pending for years with the IOM. Mr. M applied to the IOM a couple of years ago. All that he wanted was to come to the U.S. and be reunited with his son, S, who came almost a year ago. While waiting for his security clearance to be completed, Mr. M was attacked in his home by a gang of men. The men were looking for Mr. M’s son, but despite his desperate pleading, the gang bound his hands behind his back and beat, and kicked him with their shoes (the marks are clearly shown in the picture). Mr. M was left crying on his bedroom floor, where his son-in-law found him the next morning. After reaching out to the IOM and asking that Mr. M’s case be expedited, Mr. M was issued a travel date and arrived in the United States safely this month.

            Many thanks to the IOM team who worked hard to get this gentleman safely to the U.S. less than a month after we reached out to them. The big questions remain: What about those who can’t reach out to us? What about those who are losing their lives while waiting? Can’t you expedite the cases of those who write to you reporting a threat? Or do they have to survive the attack first? Not everyone is lucky enough to survive!

Tha List Project Team


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