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'World's oldest refugee' gets to stay in Sweden

Published onsdag 4 oktober 2017 kl 14.40
Afghan refugee Bibihal Uzbeki from Kunduz, Afghanistan, pictured in Croatia's main refugee camp at Opatovac near the border with Serbia, on Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2015, when she was 105 years-old. Credit: Marjan Vucetic/AP

A 106-year-old woman hailed as "the world's oldest refugee" and who suffered a debilitating stroke after her asylum application was rejected in June, will now get to stay in Sweden.

The Migration Court of Appeal said Wednesday it has reversed a decision by the Swedish Migration Agency to deport Bibihal Uzbeki who is severely disabled and can barely speak.

According to news agency AP, the court said she was in "a very bad state of health (which) may deteriorate drastically," adding that an expulsion "could be considered inhuman and degrading treatment."

The appeals court conceded that "particular consideration" had been given to "the extremely high age of the woman" and "her very bad state of health." That countered the agency's view that age alone doesn't provide grounds for asylum.

Bibikhal Uzbeki was hailed as "the world's oldest refugee" when she was found in a camp in Croatia at the height of Europe's refugee crisis in 2015.

Her grandson Mohammed Uzbeki told AP that the ruling meant she was given "a time-limited residence permit for 13 months" which ends July 19, 2019.

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