With his friends in court to support him, Yousef got the news during a 15-minute deportation hearing today (Wednesday, June 30, 2010,) in San Diego, California, after a U.S. Department of Homeland Security attorney said the government was dropping its objections.
Yousef is the eldest son of Hamas founder Sheikh Hassan Yousef, and became a Christian some time back after being given a Gospel tract in Jerusalem by a London taxi driver who was on vacation in the Holy Land.
After his conversion, he later became a spy for Israel’s Shin Bet agency and their leadership had praised his courage.
The battle to keep Yousef in American began when the DHS denied his asylum request in February 2009, claiming that he had been involved in terrorism and was a threat to the United States.
Among his supporters is former CIA director James Woolsey who had had told reporters at a recent Capitol Hill dinner to honor Mosab and others, “My view is that the decision to deny him political refugee status was incredibly idiotic. It’s hard to think of a worse immigration decision in history. It’s fundamentally nuts.”
In the surprise turnaround, Attorney Kerri Calcador gave no explanation for the government’s change of heart, but those close to the case believe it was because so many people had spoken up for Yousef, pointing out the weakness in their case, and also because they believed he would be assassinated if he was returned to the Middle East.
The immigration judge, Rico Bartolomei said that Yousef will be allowed to remain in the United States after a routine background check and also that he is fingerprinted.
“I will keep fighting the ideology that is behind terrorists because I know how they think,” he told reporters outside the courtroom.
Dan Wooding, Assist News Service