Current Affairs

Iranian lesbian deportation delayed

Gemma Pritchard August 21, 2007
bookmarking iconSAVE FOR LATER

An Iranian lesbian who has been denied refuge by the British government is due to be deported to Tehran this month, where she faces almost certain death.

Pegah Emambakhsh is currently being detained by British officials.

If she does return to Iran on 28th August as planned, her sexual orientation and her past life in Iran may lead to her being executed.

Even if she is not sentenced to death, she is likely to be prosecuted and tortured by Iran’s religious officials.

A statement from IRQO on their website states: “It seems obvious that Pegah, whose name has recently been released on many websites and in many languages, is exposed to a serious danger.”

The statement goes on to say that as the British government is aware that the Iranian government has been accused many times for abusing human rights, by deporting Iranian asylum seekers back to Iran it also acts as an associate of the Islamic regime in violating some of the basic and most important human rights.

IRQO is currently urging human rights defenders and LGBT communities worldwide to protest against the decision as “this is the only way to save the life of Pegah and the lives of many other queer asylum seekers.”

The 40-year-old Iranian sought asylum in the UK in 2005. She had escaped from her home country after her partner was arrested, tortured, and subsequently sentenced to death by stoning.

Her father was also arrested, interrogated and tortured for information on her whereabouts.

The claim for asylum was rejected by the BIA, despite her appeals.

Ms Emambakhsh was finally arrested in Sheffield two weeks ago and taken to Yarls Wood Immigration Removal Centre in Clapham, Bedfordshire.

The Asylum Seeker Support Initiative who are supporting Pegah’s case said in a statement: “The BIA have chosen not to believe that she is in such danger if returned to Iran, even though the UK government are well aware of the terrible situation that gay people face there.”

“The BIA will be committing a serious miscarriage of justice and human rights violation if they insist on Ms Emambhaksh’s deportation.”

Pegah was due to be deported on 16th August, but the deportation was stalled by the late intervention of the office of Sheffield Central Member of Parliament Richard Caborn.

As is the normal practice, the Home Office does not comment on individual cases.

Click to comment

Swipe sideways to view more posts!


Loading ...