Kenya's government expressed anger today about a ruling by an immigration court in Boston that granted asylum to President Barack Obama's aunt after she declared she could be targeted by members of Kenya's government if deported.
Government spokesman Alfred Mutua told The Associated Press that the case of Zeituni Onyango was an embarrassment and said the allegations made against Kenya were untrue and unrealistic.
"It has become a habit for Kenyans seeking asylum in other countries to lie. Her case is an embarrassment to this country and President Obama," Mutua said. "We are not looking for her. The government does not have any problem with Zeituni Onyango."
Onyango declined to comment when reached this afternoon by the Globe.
Earlier this week, the Globe reported that US Immigration Judge Leonard Shapiro based his decision to grant Onyango asylum in the United States because he believed she would be a target in Kenya not only for those who oppose the United States and Obama but for members of the Kenyan government.
Onyango is the half sister of Obama's late father and has been living in public housing in South Boston.
Shapiro granted Onyango asylum in May after her case was heard during a closed trial. His written decision was released this week through the Freedom of Information Act.
Shapiro agreed with Onyango’s assertion that she had been singled out for publicity and, unlike her relatives in Kenya, would be a “target.’’ He also outlined “serious inter-ethnic conflict’’ that had consumed Kenya in recent years and resulted in hundreds of deaths. She belongs to the minority Luo ethnic group and said that she feared for her life if she had to return to Kenya.
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