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MEPs welcome ECJ ruling on LGBTI asylum rights in Europe

GUE/NGL MEPs have hailed today's European Court of Justice (ECJ) final ruling on the rights of LGBTI people who claim asylum in the EU on the grounds that they are being persecuted over their sexuality in their country of origin.

In the ruling the ECJ states that when assessing the credibility of an asylum claim, member state authorities cannot assess cases based on stereotyped notions of homosexuality and that they cannot declare a lack of credibility if an applicant is reticent to reveal intimate personal details.

The ruling also states that asking questions about an asylum seeker's sexual practices goes against the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, in particular the right to respect of private and family life. In addition the court deemed that requiring an applicant to demonstrate homosexuality with film-based evidence would infringe on human dignity.

Swedish MEP Malin Björk said: “EU migration policy is in dire need of revision and it's a scandal that asylum claims made on the grounds of sexual orientation and identity are often ignored. As a consequence LGBTI asylum seekers' access to protection is not respected.

“This ruling is a therefore a welcome one as it will change how asylum cases for LGBTI people in the EU are handled and it will help us in the fight towards an overall more humane EU migration policy.”

Dutch MEP Dennis De Jong said: “LGBTI asylum seekers must be treated with dignity and respect. They should not be subjected to a barrage of questions that infringe on their fundamental rights.”

You can read the ECJ ruling here.

GUE/NGL Press Contacts:
Emily Macintosh +32 470 85 05 08
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20
European United Left / Nordic Green Left
European Parliamentary Group