Jan 31, 2013

Refugee case: the tricky task of proving to a court you’re gay

The case of two Bangladeshi men seeking refugee status because they claim to be gay is to be reviewed, after courts couldn't agree on whether they were gay. Melbourne-based freelance reporter David Donaldson reports.

A case involving two Bangladeshi men who are seeking refugee status in Australia because they say they are gay has exposed a tricky legal area, raising the question of how a person can prove to a court they are gay.

The men’s future is in limbo. The Refugee Review Tribunal found in November that the two men were not eligible for refugee status because they were not gay, as they had claimed. But this decision was overturned last month on appeal by the Federal Magistrates Court — and it’s thanks in part to a collection of homemade porn shots.

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5 thoughts on “Refugee case: the tricky task of proving to a court you’re gay

  1. phyllis stein

    Not only do we fail to detect some asylum boats on radar, we obviously need to install gaydar to ensure claims are processed appropriately, in a timely fashion.

  2. David R

    Is it necessary to prove there was s-x in order for a relationship to be considered legitimate? What if one partner was unable to have s-x for medical reasons? What if both partners weren’t interested in s-x? The whole thing contributes a gross invasion of people’s privacy.

  3. Venise Alstergren

    Plus ca change:-Many moons ago a couple wanting a divorce had to have one of them found in bed with a third party. Now one has to be found in bed with someone to prove they’re in a relationship.

    It’s as if an ancient ‘Ealing Studios’ comedy production is running the country-in technicolour!

  4. Warren Joffe

    When there are 30 millions refugees and internally displaced persons in the world what on earth are we doing letting in people for whom the danger to them arises from their failure to conceal something normally private and unwillingness to practise the celibacy that is customary in many groups in many societies. If we take them in and spend the usual $50,000 a year on them for several years one way or another, why do we have to give them the privilege as against others who would be equally persecuted in their own country if they were seen to be kissing a bloke in a public place – like all women?

  5. daniel clancy

    the sexuality of these men seems beside the point to me here. It seems to me that the court was right to point out the their behaviour with regards to staying in Australia is inconsistant with a genuine fear of persecution, and therefore they are not refugees. On the on the other hand I see no reason they should have any more then the normal difficulties applying for normal citizenship if they would like to live here permanantly.

    BTW I appologise for the poor spelling, being dislexic is like that

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