Failed in his bid for Asylum in Sweden today.
The 19 year old escaped Iran, fearing for his life.
Mehdi has lived in Sweden with boyfriend of 2 years, Carlo Rapisarda. Swedish courts ruled that there was no proof of their relationship beyond the statement from Carlo.
They stated that he was unable to adequately describe coming out, and was not able to establish his conversion to Christianity.
Mehdi’s transgender sister sought asylum in Sweden, and was granted. Despite this, his request has been denied.
Why the urgency.
Despite photo evidence of the couple in gay rights marches, and living openly as a couple, the immigration officials remain unmoved.
In two weeks, the Swedes will decide whether or not to send Mehdi back to a country with an appalling track record on gay rights. Reports state that between 4,000 and 6,000 gay and lesbian citizens had been executed, with the latest occurring in 2016. A teen was sentenced to death after a trial in which he was allowed no legal representation. He was jailed for 7 months prior to his death by hanging.
We can help.
The LGBT community is many and varied and if we can’t help our own, we can’t expect the same in return.
Australian officials could offer asylum and we appeal to the Minister for Immigration on humanitarian grounds.
While Australia has had a poor reputation recently in granting asylum to anyone who isn’t an Au pair, we can be persuasive and I invite gay Australians to band together.
If nothing else, we can bring hope to a couple who currently have none.
What will happen if he fails?
Mehdi converted to Christianity and was baptized after entering Sweden. Christians and gays are persecuted in Iran, and the teen faces almost certain death.