In the face of prejudice and the current political climate, two gay Iraqi soldiers have shared their inspiring love story proving that love can be found even in the darkest of situations, and that it always prevails.
Last week, President Donald Trump signed an Executive Order banning entry from seven major Muslim countries (Iraq, Iran, Libya, Sudan, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen) for 90 days. The move, which some have called an unconstitutional attack on Muslims, also bars refugees from entering the country, and paused the Syrian refugee program indefinitely. A judge later granted the ACLU a stay on the immigration ban, stopping those who had been detained at airports from being removed.
Now two brave former Iraqi soldiers have shared the inspirational and beautiful love story to prove what good immigration and helping refugees can bring about.
Nayyef Hrebid and Btoo Allami stopped by The Ellen DeGeneres Show to talk to the chat show host, who is also an LGBTQ activist, about their story, and it’s pretty moving and powerful stuff.
Explaining how they met, the couple said how it was too dangerous to be out and gay in Iraq. Feeling like they couldn’t stay in the country any longer for fear of losing their lives, the pair applied for asylum in the United States.
Nayyef, who was a translator, also told how militia came after him due to his speaking English and helping the U.S. military as an interpreter. He was later given asylum in America.
Heartbreakingly, however, he had to leave his partner, Btoo, behind.
After four years apart (and Skyping everyday), Btoo was finally able to join his partner in America. The pair have since got married, but still have to keep their relationship from their families for fear of being disowned.
Watch the couple speak about their inspirational story below.
The couple, who now live in Seattle, now work to help LGBT youth and refugees in the city.
Nayaff and Btoo have also made a documentary about their relationship. Watch the trailer below.
We’re so moved by Nayaff and Btoo’s story, and so glad that they’ve finally managed to find peace and happiness together. Their story is a reminder that love really trumps all. However, it’s also a poignant reminder that, without immigration or asylum, their lives were in danger and their love would never have been able to blossom.