The notion of "safe country" threatens the rights of LGBTIQ+ refugees

Monday, 20 June 2022

On the occasion of World Refugee Day on 20 June 2022, the Rainbow Welcome! - project consortium - which brings together the French Fondation Le Refuge, the Belgian Refuge Bruxelles and POUR LA SOLIDARITÉ-PLS, the Spanish ACATHI and the Italian Croce Rossa Italiana - has published a joint statement on the notion of safe country of origin and its influence on LGBTQIA+ asylum seekers.

In many parts of the world, people experience violence and persecution because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. 

"It is widely documented that in all regions of the world LGBTIQ+ people are targets of homicide, sexual and gender-based violence, physical assault, ill-treatment and torture, arbitrary detentions , accusations of immoral, 'deviant' or 'unnatural' conduct, and of limitation, restriction or exclusion in the enjoyment of the rights of assembly, expression and information, among others." (UNHCR, 2014)

The international protection through asylum that various human rights instruments and, in particular, the Geneva Convention of 1951 confer on certain persons against persecution or harm they suffer or may suffer in their countries of origin is increasingly being called into question by European Union law. A number of mechanisms are being developed to prevent persons in need of protection from accessing the territory of Member States or when they do manage to reach them, to make it difficult for their applications of asylum to be accepted.

We demand at European institutions, that for LGBTIQ+ asylum cases a casuistic analysis be carried out and all procedural guarantees are respected.

We believe that the guarantee of human rights (of all rights, of all people) and compliance with international obligations constitutes a state interest of the first order.

See and learn more about LGBTIQ+ asylum: https://rainbowelcome.eu/

Join us and act for the well-being and rights of LGBTIQ+ refugees: Use the hashtag #RainboWelcome to share your support for the project.