Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Iraqi translator's wife wins reprieve from deportation (Boston Globe)

Iraqi translator's wife wins reprieve from deportation

By Globe Staff
May 14, 2008 01:08 PM

US Senator John Kerry says he has been able to stave off the deportation of the wife of an Iraqi translator who has been decorated for his work during four tours in Iraq with the United States military.

The difficulties faced by Raad Al-Hilfy, an Iraqi native, and his wife, Norma, who immigrated to the United States from Guatemala, were described last week in a column by the Globe's Adrian Walker.

Kerry late last month contacted the Office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement as well as Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff. The ICE within days postponed Norma's removal for one year so her petitions for legal residency can be considered, Kerry's office said.

"A woman whose husband has been wounded in action and awarded a Medal of Freedom should not have to fear being deported," Kerry said in a statement.

"At a time when shortages for translators have made it harder to win hearts and minds and get Iraqis on our side, Raad Al-Hilfy answered the call of duty and reminded all of us what the words citizenship and patriotism really mean. It is fair and just that his family should be allowed to stay here with him in his adopted country," Kerry said.

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