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Thursday 31 July  
Gay Iraqi asylum-seekers welcome in the Netherlands
Louise Dunne's picture
The Hague, Netherlands
The Hague, Netherlands

Gay Iraqi asylum-seekers welcome in the Netherlands

Published on : 13 July 2012 - 11:07am | By Louise Dunne ((c) ANP/ BWJones)
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 The Dutch government has decided to grant asylum to gay Iraqis. Immigration minister Geert Leers says Iraq is no longer safe for homosexuals, lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders.

Mr Leers had already announced a temporary halt to the deportation of gay Iraqis last month following an alert from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The ministry warned that it was impossible to be openly gay anywhere in Iraq without being at serious risk. The Iraqi authorities also fail to take any measures to stop discrimination or attacks on homosexuals.

Koen van Dijk of the Dutch gay rights organisation COC described the announcement as an important victory for Iraqis who had fled the country because of their sexual orientation. According to van Dijk, Iraq is the most dangerous country in the world for gay people: “Research has shown that 750 people have been murdered for this reason since 2003. There are systematic campaigns. Organised militias publicly declare that they’re hunting down people who exhibit ‘deviant’ behaviour and should be killed according to Islamic law.”

Burden of proof
Asylum-seekers will have to prove that they are homosexual before their request is granted. It is unclear just how this will be checked and, says van Dijk, it will lead to difficulties, “especially because people will have to prove something they’ve taught themselves to disguise out of fear for their entire life. It will be a very tricky situation and the immigration officials carrying out the interviews will need special training”.

The Dutch parliament had asked Mr Leers in March to carry out an enquiry into the situation of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders in Iraq, following a series of reports about the murder of gays.


Anonymous 23 October 2013 - 9:48pm / Iraq

I,m gay i live in iraq i ask you to help if you get my life in danger helped me /after death is of no benefitto cry

Anonymous 29 July 2013 - 2:27am / iraq

hi my name is muhammed am a gay and I was threatened by a terrorist group, I have a evidence and all official papers to prove it and I had a lover but killed by فerrorists and I'm very afraid of that kill me also please help

serwan 6 June 2013 - 11:51pm / iraq

hey guys my name is serwan and i live in iraq im a gay and im scary of my family and my ppl around me to murdering me really i don't know how to run over there i don't kno i did nothing wrong just because i can't dreaming about girl like other man does only my big bro kno that im a gay and he have been threaten me by gun if u can help me please let me kno i really need ur help guys

Anonymous 6 April 2013 - 5:33pm / Netherlands

Well I am moroccan and cannot love my sexually the way I want or express myself or my choice as a homosexual.
They do not give Ashlee to moroccan gays because they think Morocco is a safe country for gays !!! How come ???
We have a islamist party which is against the gays and open-mindness of moroccans.
I want to live safe in the Netherlands and be happy to live my life the way I want in freedom and stability.
I am not safe in Morocco, Moroccans are asking for more rights and consideration from EU countries to start really teasing them good, we DESERVE to ave more rights with EU, we even DESERVE to be a part of EU even better and score Rumania or Bulgaria or Greece, we already had good relations with europe since centuries and we are already integrated with europe.

ali hasan 6 August 2012 - 4:49pm / irap

My name is Ali Hassan Jaafar. I live in Iraq in Baghdad province. I am threatened with death by armed Islamist groups. Badr forces.
I am hiding in the house about a year ago. After he killed some of my friends I became afraid to get out of the house. Amadhra here because of my clothes, and hair. Any formality in general. I beseech you to help to save my life from this hell. Street Address 14 Ramadan Mansour district engineers. And my phone number 07800705020 huh
Please save my life and thank you

Anonymous 16 July 2012 - 2:34pm / Boycott Iraq

Boycott Iraq. Where are your values! If they deliberately consider us not worth defending or living, then boycott this filthy regime and make it understand very well that it must protect LGBTs.

Anonymous 16 July 2012 - 12:23pm / UK

@ Bayhuntr, so you will not grant asylum to a person who is living in abject poverty, where there is no clean water and who cannot afford to pay for simple treatment for their childs health and cannot afford to bribe the healthworker. Where is your humanity?

Anonymous 14 July 2012 - 7:08am / USA

Why not tell the Iraqi government that if they don't change things like this, they will not get foreign money and support. But that won't happen because we aren't there for the Iraqi people, we're there for oil.

Anonymous 14 July 2012 - 1:10am / Mexico.

I am not homosexual, nor am Iraqi, but I want asylum, I can convert or pass by Gay requirement if it is less bad than continue to live in a Country with corrupt governments and Impunity reigns, a country called Mexico. What do I have to do to get asylum, along with my family?

Bayhuntr 16 July 2012 - 2:09am / US

In Iraq they are kidnapping gays, super gluing their butts closed and then giving them a laxative so they will suffer honorably before they die and other assorted vile things. What exactly have you experienced Mexico?

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