immigration

Thomas Schmidt’s Boyfriend Died In Tel Aviv GLBT Center Shooting. Now Israel Wants Him Gone, Too

Thomas Schmidt, a 27-year-old German living in Israel, who has little connection to his family back home, lost his 26-year-old partner Nir Katz [pictured, both] in 2009’s Tel Aviv GLBT community center shooting rampage. Katz was a counselor there. Now Schmidt is about to lose his home: Israel is trying to deport him. UPDATE: They’re letting him stay.

Living in the country with temporary resident papers, Schmidt was notified by the Interior Ministry he has until the end of the month to return to Germany after living in Israel for six years. The agency already extended his visa by nine months.

Katz’s family has the back of the partner to their late loved one. Katz’s mother Ayala appealed on his behalf to government officials; she didn’t have any luck. “My whole life is in Israel. My friends, my job, my family,” says Schmidt, who says he’s intent on fighting the ruling any way possible.