Main | Sunday, January 03, 2010

S. Korea Gives Asylum To Gay Pakistani

A South Korean court has granted political asylum to a gay Pakistani man who says he faces persecution at home.
The individual had petitioned the government for refugee status in February of last year. The Justice Ministry rejected his application four months later, however, saying his petition did not meet the criteria of a "well-founded fear of being persecuted" as stipulated by the U.N. convention on refugees. The Seoul Administrative Court reversed the ministry's decision, saying that should he be repatriated "there is a high likelihood that the plaintiff will be subject to persecution by the Pakistani government and Muslim society simply because he is gay." "My life, as a homosexual, was in danger in my country," the plaintiff told Yonhap News Agency on condition of anonymity due to sensitivity of the issue. "My family and relatives were my enemy. They said I was insulting my family, Islam and my country and threatened that they would report me to police," he said.
Since South Korea signed onto a U.N. refugee accord in 1992, it has granted less than 10% of asylum requests.

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