The Austrian magazine Falter has reported that an 18-year old from Afghanistan has been denied asylum because of doubts about his declared sexual orientation. It seems that the “evidence that was cited by officials was that he didn’t “act” or “dress” like a gay man.
“The way you walk, act and dress does not show even in the slightest that you could be homosexual,” the official reportedly wrote. The expert opinion was stated that there was no reason for the young man to fear for his personal safety in his home country. The Afghan man plans to appeal the decision.
The young man arrived in Austria from Afghanistan in 2016 and assigned to the SOS Children Village refugee camp. In his asylum application cited the fact that he was part of the persecuted Harara community, then appealed on the bases of sexual orientation.
Official’s observed that the Afghan’s behavior was at odds with his stated orientation and because he’d been in a fight at the refugee center, and a potential for aggression that wouldn’t be in the normal behavior of a homosexual.
He was observed spending more time alone or in smaller circles and avoided larger groups. “Aren’t homosexuals rather social?” the official asked in the report
During his asylum interview the man, was asked when he knew he was gay, his response was at the age of 12. An Official believed that was rather early and most likely untrue stating that as “there is no public sexual stimulation through fashion and advertisement” in Afghanistan.”
The Interior Ministry released a statement: “Asylum-seekers must substantiate their reasons for fleeing. There are no concrete rules of proof, but the authorities must show if and why a claim was found to have been substantiated,”
This would not be the first instance that an official denied asylum because of doubts of seekers sexual orientation. The European Court of Justice ruled that it is unacceptable for a Hungarian Official subject a Nigerian asylum-seeker to psychological testing to prove his sexual orientation.
“The performance of such a test amounts to a disproportionate interference in the private life of the asylum-seeker,” the judge said.
Maybe someone should inform the Ministry officials that under Sharia law, punishment is as severe as execution.