S’pore govt interfering in his release: Amos Yee Facebook post conspiracy theory

155 days in detention and counting.

By Belmont Lay | May 21, 2017

A total of 155 days in detention and counting.

That’s how long Singaporean teenager, Amos Yee, has been locked up since his arrival in the United States to seek political asylum in December 2016.

Not for want of trying, as the 18-year-old was successfully granted asylum on March 24 by an immigration judge in Chicago, bringing hope to the oppressed as this signalled that Yee has won a right to stay based on the merits of his case and can be released and out and about in the land of the free.

But things hasn’t worked out as planned.

Despite gaining asylum, Yee has remained in detention and looks set to be detained for many more months ahead — a dampener considering he escaped Singapore as a result of being incarcerated for some 50 days after he was successfully prosecuted and convicted for wounding religious feelings.

Conspiracy theory

On May 20, a latest Facebook post on Yee’s personal page issued a statement on his behalf by those working on his case. Not only did the post reveal the antics Yee got up to while in detention in the US, it also proposed a conspiracy theory amounting to an unsubstantiated claim that the Singapore government has a hand in interfering with the US court ruling on Yee’s case, resulting in his perpetual detention.

The post said:

The US government still hasn’t released Amos Yee despite Amos’s asylum being approved by Judge Samuel B Cole. We suspect that the Singaporean government might have a role in interfering in a US court’s ruling that the Singaporean government acted against Amos in bad faith and that Amos should be granted political asylum.

The post also said that while Yee was detained, he challenged a religious authority that earned him solitary confinement time and was later put on suicide watch, as well as, having some detention privileges removed due to his behaviour.

The post also claims Yee’s psychological health is deteriorating as a result of his prolonged detention.

This is what the post said:

The US government still hasn’t released Amos Yee despite Amos’s asylum being approved by Judge Samuel B Cole. We suspect that the Singaporean government might have a role in interfering in a US court’s ruling that the Singaporean government acted against Amos in bad faith and that Amos should be granted political asylum. As a result of Amos’s numerous prolonged stays in detention his psychological health is suffering. In the US, Amos has been placed twice in solitary confinement.

On the first occasion he was in solitary confinement for 2 weeks. According to Amos, he decided to attend a religious lecture with a visiting Imam. During that lecture Amos challenged the Imam claiming that Muhammad had left many violent statements in the Quran. The Imam challenged him to prove it, Amos asked the Imam for the Quran so that he could show him the verses, the Imam called security on Amos where he was immediately placed into solitary confinement for 2 weeks.

On the second occasion that Amos was placed into solitary confinement it was after he was visited by a reporter. The reporter believed Amos to be suicidal, the proper authorities were notified of Amos’s situation, and he was then immediately placed on suicide watch for two weeks. During suicide watch Amos was placed in a small cell, he wasn’t allowed any cell mates, he wasn’t allowed access to the common areas, he wasn’t allowed to shower, and had numerous other privileges limited during that time.

Amos is currently out of suicide watch but his prolonged stay in jail is only making his situation even worse. Amos is suffering under great psychological stress. We are disappointed that immigration authorities under the Trump administration would not uphold our Western values of taking in persecuted political dissidents; our country was founded on these principles. We can only suspect interference by the Singaporean government as there would be no other legitimate reason for Amos to be detained for so long after being granted asylum by the court. All updates on Amos’s page are being made on his behalf by people working on Amos’s case.

 

Latest development

US government attorneys have appealed the Chicago immigration judge’s decision to grant asylum to Yee.

Yee will remain in US custody as the case is now before the Board of Immigration Appeals. A final decision could take months.

 

More on Yee’s ongoing detention in the US, and his asylum bid:

Trump supporters welcome Amos Yee with open arms, finds out what he said, doesn’t want him anymore

Amos Yee said he is scared of returning to S’pore if US asylum bid fails

Amos Yee won’t be serving NS anytime soon after his successful US political asylum bid

Amos Yee still in jail in the US & probably will be for months to come

 

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About Belmont Lay

Belmont can pronounce "tchotchke".

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