An Iraqi Catholic man whom the Trump administration deported in June after having lived in the United States since he was six months old has died reportedly because of an inability to obtain insulin to treat his diabetes.
The death of Jimmy Aldaoud was confirmed by the American Civil Liberties Union and sources close with the man’s family, Politico reported Thursday.
Aldaoud was born in Greece and came to the U.S. at six months old. He is among the hundreds of Chaldean Catholics in the Detroit area that the Trump administration has been trying to deport as part of a reported deal with the Iraqi government.
As reported, the Trump administration is looking to deport as many as 1,400 Iraqi nationals, most of whom are Chaldean Catholic, a community that was among the many religious minorities targeted by the Islamic State in Iraq and has faced increased discrimination and persecution since the U.S. invasion in 2003.
“Jimmy was found dead today in Iraq. The likely cause of death was not being able to get his insulin,” immigration attorney Edward Bajoka wrote in a Facebook post. “He is a diabetic. He was forcefully deported to Iraq a couple of months ago. He was born in Greece and had never been to Iraq. He knew no one there. He did not speak Arabic. He was a member of the Chaldean minority group.”
Bajoka noted that Aldaoud was also a “paranoid schizophrenic.”
“His mental health was the primary reason for his legal issues that led to his deportation,” Bajoka said.
As President Donald Trump has said that immigration raids will focus on criminals, Mindy Belz of World Magazine noted that Aldaoud was arrested in 2012 for stealing power tools from a garage and for possession of marijuana.
“Aldaoud appears to have served his time but was rounded up in one of the Detroit raids & held in Ohio when @DHSgov filed a deportation case in late 2018,” Belz, an author and religious freedom advocate, tweeted. “Not everything adds up about the case but if reported circumstances of his death are true, US officials should answer why a diabetic with mental health issues was deported to a war-torn country with a Level 4 ‘do not travel’ warning.”
A video of Aldaoud sitting on an Iraqi street complaining about his situation following his deportation has circulated on social media.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Samuel Smith