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Ugandan lesbian granted asylum in Germany, but judge insists it will not set a precedent for LGBT asylum seekers

Lily Wakefield March 10, 2020
uganda lesbian granted asylum in germany

Demonstrators outside the Munich courthouse. (LeTRa/ Faceook)

A lesbian from Uganda has been granted asylum in Germany, but the judge said that it will not set a precedent for future LGBT+ asylum seekers from the country.

The 41-year-old woman, who remains anonymous, suffered repeated violence, death threats and an arson attack on her home in Uganda.

She applied for asylum in Germany in 2011, but was rejected and forced to go to trial.

However according to Deutsche Welle, during the trial at a Munich courthouse, the federal office for migration and refugees admitted that she did in fact qualify for refugee status, and the case was thrown out.

LGBT+ activists celebrated the outcome, hoping that it would pave the way for other LGBT+ asylum seekers from Uganda, who suffer extreme violence and persecution in their home country.

However, the judge said that it was an “individual case” and would not set a precedent for LGBT+ asylum seekers from Uganda in the future.

Sara Schmitter, a psychologist at the lesbian advice centre LeTRa which supported the woman through the asylum process, said in a press release that she still had hope.

She said: “Even though it was not recognised that LGBTIQ are being persecuted as a group in Uganda, we still see this individual decision at a higher judicial level as an encouraging step in the right direction. We are really happy for our client.”

The 41-year-old woman, who no longer has to fear being deported, said: “I am happy and I still can not really believe it.”

LGBT+ people in Uganda face extreme violence, including from law enforcement.

Uganda’s ethics and integrity minister Simon Lokodo announced plans in October 2019 month to re-table a “kill the gays” bill, which was first floated several years ago but was not enacted.

However, a spokesperson for the president later denied that it would impose the death penalty for gay people, and said that the current punishment of life in prison “already handles issues of unnatural sexual behaviour”.

More: asylum seeker, bavaria, Germany, kill the gays bill, lesbian, refugee, Uganda

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