CA10: Violence in El Salvador is not, by itself, a basis for asylum

Several years ago, Santos Raul Escobar-Hernandez was attacked by a man named Nelson in El Salvador over some political graffiti near his house, and attacked again even after he removed it. His application for asylum in the United States was denied.

In Escobar-Hernandez v. Barr, the Tenth Circuit affirmed, in an opinion by Judge McKay. The Board of Immigration appeals found that Escobar-Hernandez’s dispute with Nelson occurred several years ago, and was a dispute over who should remove the graffiti, regardless of Escobar-Hernandez’s own political views. The Tenth Circuit held that the evidence was sufficient to support these findings.

Moreover, while the Court acknowledged that El Salvador is a violent place, “pervasive violence or civil unrest in an applicant’s country, without any indicia of connection to a protected ground asserted by the applicant, is not a basis for asylum.”

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