Friday, November 8, 2013

European Court rules on asylum for LGBT people from African countries with harsh anti-gay laws that are enforced

The European Court of Justice (ECJ), in the Netherlands, has ruled gay and lesbian citizens from any African country that regularly imprisons people for homosexual conduct or even speech or even appearances, can seek political asylum in any EU country.
The mere presence of a “sodomy law” would not automatically guarantee that asylum could be caught unless the country enforced the laws.  The countries that seem to be most at issue include Uganda and Nigeria.
ThinkProgress has a story by Andrew Butterfield here
A good question would come up with Islamic countries.

Many states in the United States had sodomy laws, which were made unconstitutional by the 2003 Lawrence v. Texas decision.  A few states (most of all Texas) considered very draconian anti-gay laws in the 1980’s with the AIDS epidemic.  In a few states, the individual states laws are still technically on the books even in spite of the Lawrence decision.  

Update: Nov 12

The International Business Times reports that the UK has become overzealous in asking immigrants seeking political asylum for being gay to prove they are gay with graphic materials, in this story by Palash Ghosh, "Do Ask, Do Tell: UK Authorities asking 'gay' asylum seekers to prove sexual orientation, link here

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