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Young Gay Iranian Soon on His Way Back to UK?


Terrified of being deported to execution, so fled from UK in April


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Names and other identifying aspects have deliberately been withheld to protect relatives still in Iran.

SOUTHAMPTON, October 17, 2007  –  Mehdi, the young gay Iranian who fled the United Kingdom in April, could be back in the country within weeks, his uncle revealed last night.

The 19-years-old, who had a student visa in order to study in this country, wrote an impassioned plea last April that was released by Toronto-based IRanian Queer Organisation (IRQO) and published by UK Gay News, Don’t Leave Iranian Gays Abandoned.

So scared was Mehdi that he was going to be deported to Iran after his asylum tribunal appeal failed – it is believed on the flimsy reason that the tribunal adjudicator did not believe that Iran’s calendar if different from the one used in the West (January 1 is, in the West March 21) when he questioned discrepancies in dates at the hearing – that he disappeared.

Surfacing in Germany, and without a passport, Mehdi was eventually caught by the German authorities.

With the knowledge that his boyfriend had been executed and that the same fate would await him back in Iran, he managed to slip across the border into the Netherlands and laid low in Venlo.

Although his was in contact with relatives in the UK, nothing publicly was heard of Mehdi until just after the now-famous “No Gays in Iran” speech in New York last month by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Mehdi emailed IRQO to say that if there were no Iranian gays, then who was he?  This email was released and was carried by scores of newspapers around the world.  UK Gay News, again, published it: Nineteen Year Old Says ‘I Am an Iranian Gay’.

According to his relatives in Hampshire, the Home Office has told the Dutch authorities that the UK is prepared to accept Mehdi back into the country – and that they would, as the relative put it, “look into his case”.

“The matter has to be put before a court in the Netherlands, but we expect Medhi back within two weeks,” the relative told UK Gay News last night.


Nineteen Year Old Says ‘I Am an Iranian Gay’The following email has been received by the IRanian Queer Organisation in Toronto from a young gay man who was studying at school in UK and, after difficulties with the UK Home Office over asylum managed to flee England, ending up in the Netherlands.  The letter is published here as written.  (UK Gay News, September 26, 2007)

Don’t Leave Iranian Gays Abandoned.  By Mehdi.   This article was written by a 19-years-old gay Iranian who tells how, while he was a student in London, his boyfriend back home was executed for being gay.  Mehdi says he was scared of returning home and meeting the same fate when his student visa expired last year – and of his asylum application to the Home Office.  (UK Gay News, April 18, 2007)



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Posted: 17 October 2007 at 00:00 (UK time)


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