An Egyptian teenager who traveled to the United States to showcase his inventions at a science fair has decided to seek asylum here, fearing he will be arrested if he returns home.
Immigrant rights attorney Farida Chehata said Monday that 17-year-old Abdallah Assem will submit his application to American immigration authorities within a month.
Chehata says Assem fears returning to Egypt because he has criticized the current government. The lawyer for the Council on American-Islamic Relations says he was previously detained and accused of torching police cars, which he denies.
Egyptian authorities released him and let him travel to last week's Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Los Angeles. His invention focused on helping the disabled communicate.
A message was left at the Embassy of Egypt in Washington.