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A Somali refugee waiting for his wife and children now awaits election results.


Afkab Hussein has barely eaten since Election Day.

“All I can do is pray and watch the news,” said Mr. Hussein, 32, a refugee from Somalia.

He arrived in the United States five years ago, after more than a decade in a refugee camp in Kenya. But he is still waiting for his wife and two children to join him.

“This election is the only hope for me to reunite with my wife and sons,” Mr. Hussein said on Friday as he drove his eighteen-wheeler from his home in Columbus, Ohio, to Buffalo.

Shortly after Mr. Hussein’s family was approved to join him — he fell in love with Rhoda at the refugee camp while his case was already in process — President Trump took office. The new administration soon suspended the refugee program and banned residents of several predominantly Muslim countries from entering the United States.

Since then, thousands of refugees have been stranded in Africa, the Middle East and Asia.

Mr. Hussein has called his family every day on WhatsApp. The pictures of his two little boys were his only source of joy as he crisscrossed the country alone to make deliveries.

As the presidential election approached, the polls gave Mr. Hussein hope. But when the early results gave Mr. Trump a lead over Joseph R. Biden Jr. in battleground states, he was filled with dread. “I was so nervous, my heart pained,” Mr. Hussein said. He stopped eating.

By Friday, with Mr. Biden closer to victory, he was hopeful again.

“I am very, very happy. You can’t imagine,” Mr. Hussein said as he passed Harrisburg, Pa. “I will be with my family.”

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