UK government slammed for breaking pledge not to deport gay asylum seekers

On November 1, 2012 Gaystarnews reported that deportation of LGBT refugees to countries where they face violence continues, despite UK government pledge of being a safe haven.

Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) asylum seekers fleeing from violence, persecution and death threats are being deported from United Kingdom despite repeated pledges by the government for a fair treatment.

LGBT and human rights campaigners have slammed the UK government for failing such pledges and called upon it to keep to its word and ensure a fairer procedure for asylum seekers fleeing homophobic violence.

The UK coalition government pledged: ‘We will stop the deportation of asylum seekers who have had to leave particular countries because their sexual orientation.’

British prime minister David Cameron personally promised in 2010, that: ‘Those Africans seeking asylum on the basis of sexual orientation and at real risk of persecution in their home countries should be allowed to stay in the UK.’

However, there are increasing reports from charities and lawyers and representing individuals seeking asylum based on their actual or perceived sexual orientation, that UK Home Office is refusing to believe asylum seekers are genuinely gay or lesbian, forcing their removal to countries where they are at risk of violence, imprisonment and murder.

recent debate in the UK House of Lords, reported by GSN, also highlighted this issue.

Malawian lesbian refugee, Esther C. She was scheduled for deportation twice, despite seeking a judicial review of the decision to refuse her asylum. She has won a last minute reprieve but this was only due to a determined campaign to save her from deportation.

Gay Star News previously reported on the case of Alice Niji which has been dismissed on the grounds she and her female partner had not done enough to prove her lesbianism. She was deported to Cameroon, despite the well-known anti-gay witch-hunt that is happening in that country.

GSN also broke the story on a gay Nigerian man, Olalekan M Ayelokun (Ola), who provided testimonies of his homosexuality from male sexual partners, was deported after a judge refused to believe he was gay.

Speaking with GayStarNews, Omar Kuddus, chair of GayAsylumUK, has repeatedly criticized this policy of the UK Borders Agency (UKBA): ‘To what length does a person have to go to prove he or she is gay? Continued