I.S. Law Firm secured a grant of asylum for a Nepalese political activist through the immigration court proceedings. Since 1990s, Nepal had been undergoing radical political transformation. Our client was a political activist since 2006, when people opposing Nepal’s Communist Party (Maoist) insurgency were under risk due to excessive violence against them by Maoists throughout the country. The applicant was assaulted, threatened, and beaten by the Maoist insurgents on several occasions. They threatened her with death if she did not join them and continued her activist work against them. Our client came to the United States and applied for asylum without any legal representation.
In 2015, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) refused to grant her asylum status on the basis of the lack of well-founded fear of future persecution and referred the application to the immigration court. The main reason of this conclusion was the alleged political changes in Nepal. The asylum officer considered that, even though the applicant had past persecution, she was no longer under risk of such persecution because allegedly the country conditions had changed in Nepal and the role of Maoist had been diminished. The officer failed to recognize that a recent change in the government does not immediately eliminate the reasonable possibility of persecution.
We proved in Arlington Immigration Court that this conclusion was inaccurate because, despite recent political changes in Nepal, Maoist are still powerful in Nepal and as United Communist Party of Nepal (Unity Center-Masal) they are the third biggest party in the country holding a number of seats in the Nepalese Parliament (Constituent Assembly). We successfully demonstrated that Maoist, through its “youth wing” called Young Communist League (YCL), still consistently target activists opposing Maoist ideology and punish them in different abusive ways.
Attorney Ismail Shahtakhtinski was able to demonstrate to the immigration judge that our client would face serious threats and persecution if she returned back. We filed medical and police reports confirming assaults and attacks on our client and her family members in Nepal. We also provided the court with witness statements about recent attacks on the applicant’s house and threats against her family. This evidence supporting the applicant’s asylum application made it clear that the applicant had well-founded fear of persecution. We submitted reliable sources indicating Maoist’s arbitrary acts as well as lack of accountability for human rights and failure of establishment of transitional justice system after political changes in the country. Based on this comprehensive and reliable evidence, the Court granted our client’s asylum application.
Lawyers at I.S. Law Firm have helped many foreign nationals obtain asylum status, both through asylum offices and immigration courts. To learn more about asylum process, visit: /immigration-law/asylum/. You can also read about some of our other successful asylum cases: