Stowaway boy's refugee mom says son has 'strong affections' for her, seeks reunion

The Associated Press

In this photo taken Sunday, April 27, 2014, Ubah Mohammed Abdule, 33, right, sits with her son Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed, 8, left, and daughter Neshad Yusuf Ahmed, 5, center, outside her hut in the Shedder refugee camp near the town of Jigjiga, in far eastern Ethiopia. The Somali mother’s home is a small shelter with a frame of sticks covered by ragged blankets on the dusty grounds of a refugee camp but it was to her that her 15-year-old son Yahya Abdi wanted to travel to on an impossible journey as a stowaway on a plane from California. (AP Photo/Elias Asmare)

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"I prefer they be with me than live with a stepmother in the U.S.," said Abdule, who has two other children, an 8-year-old son and 5-year-old daughter, living with her in the camp.

Abdule may yet be able to reunite with her children in the U.S., U.N. officials said.

She has passed her first interview with the U.N. refugee agency's list of those who might qualify to immigrate to America, said a legal protection officer at the refugee camp, Abdlrasak Abas Omar. If she passes the next phase, he said, she could move to the U.S. in less than a year.

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