But the interpretation of that standard has come into question after a man called Riyad was denied asylum in Sweden. Riyad, a Christian Assyrian, worked at a store on a United States Army base in Iraq. In 2004 Riyad's brother, who also worked at the store and as an interpreter for the US Army as well, was kidnapped and decapitated by Islamic extremists who videotaped the murder and spread the video as a warning to American sympathizers. Riyad was also threatened. But the Swedish Immigration Court ruled against his application for asylum.
Thomas Hammarberg, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, said he doesn't understand why Riyad's asylum application was denied.