These refugees stayed at Donald Trump’s childhood home
The three-storey Tudor-style home in Queens was built by the US president’s father, Fred.
Donald Trump’s childhood home in New York had some new occupants over the weekend.
Anti-poverty charity Oxfam rented it on Saturday and invited four refugees to talk with journalists and share their stories as a way of drawing attention to the refugee crisis as the United Nations General Assembly convenes this week – attended by the US president.
The three-storey Tudor-style home in Queens that Mr Trump’s father, Fred, built in 1940 is now a rental available on Airbnb that anyone can stay in for 725 US dollars (£537) a night.
It was auctioned off to an unidentified buyer in March for 2.14 million US dollars (£1.58 million).
Mr Trump’s administration issued travel bans on people from six Muslim-majority countries and all refugees.
After various court challenges, the Supreme Court last week allowed the restrictive policy on refugees to remain temporarily. The justices will hear arguments on the bans on October 10.
Mr Trump lived in the house on a tree-lined street of single-family dwellings until he was about four, when his family moved to another home his father had built nearby.
“Knowing Donald Trump was here at the age of four makes me think about where I was at the age of four,” said Eiman Ali, 22. “We’re all kids who are raised to be productive citizens, who have all these dreams and hopes.”
Ms Ali was three when she arrived in the United States from Yemen, where her parents had fled when war broke out in their native Somalia.
“To have someone so outspoken against my community become the president of the United States was very eye-opening and hurtful because I have invested a lot in this country,” she said.
Down the hall, Ghassan al-Chahada, 41, a Syrian refugee who arrived in the US with his wife and three children in 2012, sat in a room with bunk beds and a sign on the wall that said it was probably Mr Trump’s childhood bedroom.
“Before the conflict began in Syria we had dreams of coming to America,” Mr Al-Chahada said. “For us, it was a dream come true.”
Mr Al-Chahada said his life changed when Mr Trump signed the ban that barred people from Syria and five other countries from entering the United States.
“I had hopes I would get my green card and be able to visit my country,” Mr Al-Chahada said. “But since Trump was elected I don’t dare, I don’t dare leave this country and not be able to come back.”