Mehdi must stay – No deportation to Iran
The Home Office bid to deport an Iranian gay asylum seeker will put him at risk of arrest, imprisonment, torture and execution
London – 7 March 2008
Gay Iranian asylum applicant Mehdi Kazemi is in detention in the Netherlands. He is fighting attempts by the Dutch government to return him to the UK. Mehdi fled Britain and sought asylum in the Netherlands because the British government wants to deport him back to Iran. The gay human rights group OutRage! campaigns on asylum issues and supports Mehdi Kazemi’s claim for refugee status. OutRage! spokesperson Peter Tatchell said: “The Home Office decision to deport Mehdi back to Iran is shameful and reckless. “If returned to Tehran, he will be at risk of imprisonment, torture and execution. “Gay men in Iran are hanged from public cranes using the barbaric method of slow strangulation, which is deliberately designed to cause maximum suffering. “This deportation order borders on a criminal decision. It violates the government’s legal obligations under the Refugee Convention. “The Home Office country report on Iran ignores the true scale of homophobic repression, in order to justify the deportation of lesbian and gay Iranians. “I have been tipped off by a senior Home Office official that government orders are to cut asylum numbers at almost any price. “Staff are encouraged to assume that all asylum applicants are bogus and to play down the merits of individual cases, such as Medhi’s,” said Mr Tatchell. Background Here is the Everyone organisation’s link about Medhi’s case. Please scroll down to read Mehdi’s own statement, as given to the Iranian Queer Rights Organisation: http://www.everyonegroup.com/
Need to reform the handling of LGBT asylum claims “The Home Secretary, Jacqui Smith MP, must urgently remedy her department’s five failings with regard to the treatment of LGBT asylum claimants,” added Mr Tatchell. “Currently, the Home Office stands accused of: – No training on sexual orientation issues for asylum staff and adjudicators – No explicit official policy supporting the right of refugees to claim asylum on the grounds of sexual orientation – No action to stamp out the abuse of LGBT refugees in UK asylum detention camps – No accurate, up-to-date information on the victimisation of LGBT people in violently homophobic countries – No access to adequate legal representation for LGBT asylum applicants “These are systemic failings by a callous and indifferent government that is more interested in cutting asylum numbers than in ensuring a fair, just and compassionate asylum system,” concluded Mr Tatchell.
Peter Tatchell is the Green Party parliamentary candidate for Oxford East
http://www.greenoxford.com/ and www.petertatchell.net
Donations are requested to help fund Peter Tatchell’s campaigns promoting human rights, democracy and global justice. Peter is unpaid and receives no grants. To continue his human rights work, he depends on donations from friends and supporters. Please make cheques payable to: “Peter Tatchell Human Rights Fund”. Send to: Peter Tatchell Human Rights Fund, PO Box 35253, London E1 4YF To download a donation form or a standing order mandate, go to Donations at: www.tatchellrightsfund.org To email PTHRF: info@tatchellrightsfund.org
Thank you. Richard Kirker, Treasurer PTHRF
For information about Peter Tatchell’s campaigns: www.petertatchell.net


  1. Noah Dorson

    Mehdi, a 19 year old Iranian homosexual, is in danger of execution should the United Kingdom deport him back to his native country. What can we do to save this young man’s life? Please, plea with the U.K. and the U.N. to help spare this man’s world. Write to the United Nations at inquiries@un.org to put pressure on those who wish to send Mehdi back to Iran. Even more, write to Amnesty International by going to Link and keep Mehdi safe.
    I have send messages to the White House along with a fax, but I am not sure what else I can do. Please come together for Mehdi.
    Noah Dorson from Seattle, Wa

  2. Dariusz Rzóska

    I am a Polish student and I would like to voice my concern about case of Mehdi Kazemi. I study European studies and also law. I wonder if Mr. Kazemi has tried to inform European Court about his situation. The case which I have mentioned earlier was headed in 2000 yea. Turkish woman escaped from Iran because of being accused of adultery. Turkey government wanted to extradite
    her but European Court of Human Rights stipulated that this action would pose a threat to her life and forbade extradition. In my opinion those two cases are very similar, life of Mr. Kazemi is also in danger. I would be gratefully if you could help him in any way,
    for example letting him know what should he do.

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