Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Gay Student Studying in Winnipeg Fears Arrest If Deported to Own Country

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Gay Student Studying in Winnipeg Fears Arrest If Deported to Own Country

Article excerpt

Gay student fears arrest in own country

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WINNIPEG - A foreign student studying at the University of Winnipeg fears that if his hearing before the Immigration and Refugee board on Tuesday doesn't go well, he could end up in prison.

Hazim Ismail is gay, which is illegal in his home country of Malaysia, and is also an atheist, which is not illegal but is frowned upon in the Muslim nation.

He says a story about him setting up a GoFundMe page in order to keep going to university in Canada ended up outing him against his will in the Malaysian media.

Last year, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak made headlines for comparing the LGBT community to the terrorism group ISIS, calling them both enemies of Islam.

Ismail has applied for refugee status because he fears for his own safety if he were to return home.

He says it has been a troubling time, and it doesn't help that his family is not on his side. …

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