Just hours before the scheduled deportation of Liberian soccer player Andrew Nagbe, the Swedish Migration Board has announced that it will reconsider his deportation due to "new" evidence pointing to a potential lack of safety for him in his native Liberia.
Nagbe was detained at Stockholm Pride three weeks ago. Last week an article in the Swedish publication Dagens Nyheter, Nagbe made the claims that he would be jailed, beaten and raped in prison upon his return to Africa. Homosexual sex is illegal in Liberia and carries a sentence of up to a year in prison and a $1,000 fine.
The news today from Dagens Nyheter is positive for Nagbe's chances of staying in Sweden:
The reason why the Swedish Migration Board stopped the deportation at the very last moment is because the new documents have been received in the gay football player's favor - which could ultimately give the 22-year-old a residence permit.
"The first is that his case has received international attention, including the BBC, and that his sexual orientation is now even better known in Liberia. Since then UNHCR (UN Refugee Agency) has been informed about this and gone in with an opinion to Andrew's advantage," said Stig-Åke Petersson.
Some Liberians have taken to Twitter and other social media claiming that Nagbe's fears are unfounded, while other have said sending him back to Liberia now that he is a well-known gay person is sending him to "his early grave."