UPDATED: July 31, 2014.
has just won her appeal. She has won asylum in the United Kingdom after a hard fought battle by activists and amazing attorneys and a compassionate and experienced barrister who came to her aid. This highlights the cruelty of the UK system – that puts already traumatized people through hell before the truth is reached and justice is metered out.
The Home office denied her asylum on the basis that she did not get into a relationship whilst in the UK for the period of 5 years she has been here. Harriet was asked what she used to do sexually with her partner in private, even though she explained to them briefly, she feared and was humiliated at the encroachment on her privacy. The Home office also used this against her. These are the kind of questioning the Home Secretary promised to review.
Harriet’s case has been placed in the fast track system without her being given a chance to obtain decent legal representation and gather evidence. If sent back to Uganda she runs the risk of being arrested at the airport, detained and imprisoned for years.
Out & Proud Diamond is asking that an attorney step forward to take the case urgently and that the Home Secretary cancel Harriet’s removal direction, giving the courts a chance to review her case. Harriet should also be released from Yarlswood detention where she has been since March 2014. She is in a severe state of trauma and needs to be with members of her community.
On February 24, 2014 the Ugandan president Museveni signed the controversial Anti-Homosexuality Bill which includes life sentences for so-called ‘aggravated homosexuality’. Within the following days the newspaper Red Pepper published a list with the full names and photographs of 200 alleged homosexuals. David Kato, a prominant LGBTI activist, was killed a few days after a similar list was published in 2011. The bill, the lists and the murder of David Kato are illustrative for the extremely violent climate and hatred towards LGBTIs in Uganda.
It is noted by OUT & Proud that since President Museveni was invited to the UK last month the UK govt has seemed to step up its deportation of LGBT asylum seekers back to Uganda.
Updated :LGBT human rights defenders and activists have acknowledged knowing Harriet. One group, at great risk to its own security, is going to write a letter in support of Harriet’s case, stating that she is known to be a lesbian in their community and that they were aware that she left Uganda when the opportunity presented, to escape persecution by her own family.
Excellent news. A solicitor was found for Harriet, various activists came forward with helpful reports, new papers were filed and Harriet’s removal flight back to Uganda was cancelled. She is still in detention at Yarwood and will not given a new opportunity to present her case for review. We will keep you posted. Well dont to all involved and to all who signed and will continue to sign the Petition. Keep signing so we can continue to show solidarity.
Murder of Ugandan lesbian deportee at the hands of UK authorities, Reliance Security and Qatar Airlines
U.K. Activists demand justice By Melanie Nathan, March 14, 2013. Yesterday we reported the story of the death of Jackie Nanyonjo. Now U.K. activists are calling it murder – read The Movement for Justice report below. The question is who is responsible. Evidence is emerging that Jackie was not well while incarcerated by U.K. authorities […]
By Melanie Nathan, March 12, 2013. Activists in the United Kingdom are blaming the United Kingdom Border Agency for deporting an asylum seeker who has now according to Pink News, died in Uganda, “after she claimed she was at risk of homophobic persecution,” if she returned. When it comes to LGBT Asylum the UK is […]