January 30, 2017 at 3:17 pm EST | by Mariah Cooper
Gay Iraqi soldiers share love story on ‘Ellen’
(Screenshot via YouTube.)

(Screenshot via YouTube.)

Two gay Iraqi soldiers shared the story of how they met, fell in love and got married, despite Iraq’s homophobia, on “Ellen.”

Nayyef and Btoo met as enlisted Iraqi soldiers in 2004. The pair began their relationship by eating meals together and say soon after they were sharing every meal. For fear of getting tortured or killed for being together, the couple kept their relationship a secret.

Nayyef’s job as an English translator put his life at risk and he applied for asylum in the United States. Btoo was unable to get asylum and the couple spent four years apart but skyped every day.

When the couple was finally reunited, Nayyef proposed.

“Believe me after that, love wins,” Btoo says.

Now Nayyeff and Btoo are married and live together in Seattle where they help LGBT youth from the Middle East settle into the United States. At the end, DeGeneres gives them a surprise gift to help them with their efforts.

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