An Albanian citizen seeking asylum in the US has been refused and will be deported back to the country.
Xhino Gejtani said he had been threatened because of his political beliefs. As a supporter of the Democratic Party, he said members of the ruling Socialist Party had threatened to kill him three times during summer 2017. On one occasion, he said that him and his father were physically attacked and stabbed, requiring stitches.
Then, following the Socialist Party winning a second mandate, he decided to leave Albania and seek asylum in the US fearing he would be “persecuted, beaten and killed” because of his political beliefs.
The US courts noted the attacks as well as the fact Gejtani had asked for, and been refused police protection, but said that it didn’t constitute persecution. The judge said while what happened to Gejtani was “repugnant”, his future fear of persecution was not reasonable.
Another judge disagreed with the ruling noting that what happened to Gejtani was not “isolated or unaccompanied by any physical harm” but was in fact “more severe that what this court has identified as persecution in past cases.”
Earlier this week, 25 attempted asylum seekers were repatriated to Albania from EU countries. Hundreds of Albanian citizens are granted protection or refugee status every year in the EU. Common reasons for protection are political persecution, LGBTIQ individuals living in fear, blood feuds, and in some cases, victims of crimes such as trafficking.