Gay Iranian Kills Himself After UK Asylum Appeal Denied
April 20, 2005
By Peter Moore London Bureau
LONDON—A gay man who feared he
would be executed if he were deported to his native Iran killed himself after
the British government turned down his second appeal for asylum a coroner’s
inquest was told on Tuesday.
Hussein Nasseri, 26, was terrified of being returned to
Iran where homosexuality is illegal and punishable by death.
An inquest this week into his death was told that Nasseri
entered the UK in March 2000 and claimed asylum. He told authorities that he
had been persecuted because of his sexuality and had been thrown in jail when
it was discovered he was gay.
Nasseri managed to escape and made his way to England.
A friend testified at the inquest that Nasseri was in
panic after learning that his asylum application had been denied.
“I saw him two weeks before he died. He was very upset.
He said he wanted to kill himself. He said he had bought a gun to kill
himself,” his friend, Nader Ashkani, also from Iran, testified.
On June 25, last year, just days after learning he would
be deported Nasseri shot himself between the eyes with an airgun modified to
fire .22 caliber bullets.
The plight of gay asylum seekers has been highlighted by
LGBT rights group Outrage. The group has accused the Labor government of
Another case is that of a 25 year old Algerian who is
also facing deportation. The man, identified by Outrage as Saad B, has lived
in the UK since he was 15. He has a good job and a domestic partner.
He and his partner, Matthew Skelly, were planning to
register with Britain’s domestic partner registry when it begins in
But, Saad’s asylum application has been rejected. All
his appeals have been turned down – despite the fact that he has lived his
entire adult life in the UK.
He is scheduled to be deported just weeks before the
registry opens—but, if he were already registered, he would be considered a
“spouse” and entitled to live in the UK.
“I fear for my safety and mental well-being if I am
sent back to Algeria,” he said. Like Iran and most other Islamic states,
Algeria practices Sharia law which calls for death for homosexuals.