J. Lester Feder
Original Article: bzfd.it/1yCVDvr
In a landmark ruling, the European Union’s top court has banned member states from requiring that LGBT asylum seekers “prove” their sexual orientation.
The judgement came as part of a broader ruling on Tuesday that protects the rights of people on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity in EU member states.
The most sensitive portion of the ruling holds that member states cannot require asylum seekers to “prove” they are LGBT by answering detailed questions about their sex lives or submitting videos of themselves engaged in sexual acts. Taking evidence “concerning details of the sexual practices of that applicant [is] contrary to the fundamental rights guaranteed by the [Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union] and, in particular, to the right to respect for private and family life,” the court wrote, and would violate protections for “human dignity.”
The European Court of Justice ruling comes in response to a petition brought by three people denied asylum in the Netherlands because their claims to be gay were not considered “credible.” One of the petitioners had attempted to prove his sexual orientation by submitting a sex video, and another offered to submit to a “‘test’ that would prove his homosexuality or to perform a homosexual act to demonstrate the truth of his declared sexual orientation.” The third had his asylum claim rejected because statements “concerning his homosexuality were vague, perfunctory, and implausible” and officials believed he “ought to have been able to give more details about his emotions and his internal awareness of his sexual orientation.”
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