Outcry against Britain’s gay deportations goes global
Gay rights campaigners across the world are pilling the pressure on Theresa May to suspend deportations of gay and lesbian asylum seekers until a review into the Home Office rules is completed.
Over 162,000 people worldwide have signed an petition calling for a halt to the deportations, amid concern at the case of Nigerian lesbian asylum seeker Aderonke Adejumoke Apata, who faces being returned to her home country despite the fact homosexuality can be punished by stoning in some areas.
"The asylum system is systematically set up for people to fail," she said.
"We are treated as liars and must prove our innocence. The burden of proof is on the applicant as we are guilty from the onset because we are routinely not believed and our credibility constantly attacked."
The Home Office is currently undertaking a review of gay and lesbian asylum cases after MPs found asylum seekers were having to show officials sexually explicit photos of themselves to prove their sexuality.
"The asylum system is broken. Lesbian, gay, bi and trans people face systematic abuse when all they seek is fairness," Andre Banks, executive director and co-founder of All Out, said from New York.
"Theresa May took the first step by demanding a review of the invasive and humiliating treatment gays face in the asylum process.
"The secretary must now go further to stand up for Aderonke and others by immediately suspending all deportations until the system is fixed."
Apata started a petition on Causes.com to prevent her own deportation but it has now grown to demand a moratorium on gay and lesbian deportations until the review is completed.