Russian trans asylum seeker, Lita, who is currently in hiding somewhere in Sweden, narrowly escaped being caught last week. But her partner and boyfriend Anton was apprehended by police and is now in deportation prison in Flen, from where he will shortly be removed to Russia.
Lita went into hiding earlier this year when her final attempts to seek asylum in Sweden were rejected by the Swedish Immigration service. According to Lita, she faces likely violence and the likelihood of prison should she return to Russia – but this claim is disputed by Swedish officials.
She also argues that in their original assessment of her case, they treated her not as a trans woman, but as a gay man, and while subsequent dealings were more respectful – and appropriate – she believes that her treatment reflects petty politicking on the part of those charged with deciding on her case.
They are unwilling to accept that life in Russia for a trans woman is dangerous – or that this danger is entwined with state attitudes towards transgender issues: and she also believes that having made a mistake in their initial handling of her case, the authorities are reluctant to over-recognise that their original dsecision was a mistake.
Lita had been living with her partner in a camp near Vingåker. Last Tuesday, an ambush was organised by police, and Anton was captured: he is due to be transferred to Arlanda airport this Thursday, 9am Swedish time – and he will be flown back to Moscow on the 1pm flight.
Following her narrow escape, Lita tells us: “I am in a safe place far from there and i am continuing to fight.
“I am still waiting for additional documentation from Russia and I am going to consult with asylum experts about the consequences of this situation.”