Oslo, Norway (CNN) — To escape Iran, Mohammad Mostafaei traveled for more then 10 hours on foot and on horseback over the mountains, crossing the border illegally into Turkey.
Soon afterwards, he ended up in a detention center for illegal immigrants in Istanbul, where he was incarcerated for nearly a week.
After several surreal and sometimes dangerous weeks, Mostafaei’s journey appears to finally be over. He now strolls the tidy, rain-soaked streets of Norway’s capital, safe from the Iranian security forces who he claims targeted him. But Mostafaei is far from at ease.
“I don’t like to be a refugee, nor do I like to work abroad,” he says. “My love is to remain in Iran and help people who somehow have been oppressed whether by society or by the law or by the judicial system. But regrettably, I became a victim.”
Mostafaei is a human rights lawyer. He specializes in defending Iranians under the age of 18, who have been sentenced to death for crimes ranging from murder to sodomy.