Austria has rejected the asylum claim of an Afghan national who claims to be fleeing persecution for being homosexual after not being able to find any gay pornography on his mobile phone.
The man, who sought asylum in Austria after claiming to be oppressed for his homosexuality in his native Afghanistan, was rejected by the country’s asylum authority, the Austrian Federal Office for Asylum (BFA), who deemed him not likely to be homosexual, Focus reports.
The BFA rejected the Afghan saying in a letter: “After you have a smartphone and apparently also use the internet, it is extremely unlikely that you are in actual communication with other men with no photos (resulting from chats) on your mobile phone.”
“Also, it can not be understood that you can only give superficial information about your Internet usage behaviour. There should be interest here (as stated) in pornographic material of homosexuals, at least from favourited sites on the Internet,” the letter continued.
The decision sparked outrage among pro-migrant groups like the organisation Fairness Asyl (“Fair Asylum”) which called it a “mockery”.
EU Court Rules Against Sexuality Test for Asylum-Seekers https://t.co/cAiJb9Xf6C
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) January 25, 2018
The case comes after two other alleged homosexual asylum seekers were rejected by the BFA, including an Iraqi who was rejected because the agency found him too “girlish” in his behaviour and an 18-year-old Afghan who was rejected for not acting gay enough in his clothing or mannerisms.
Since the formation of the conservative-populist government under Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, Austria has vowed to be tougher on asylum issues with populist Freedom Party (FPÖ) Interior Minister Herbert Kickl promising to reform the system after a wave of migrant violence.
The government has also focused on increasing deportations of failed asylum seekers with figures released in June revealing a 36 percent increase in deportations compared to 2017.
Mr Kickl has also been firm in his anti-Islamisation stance, pushing for the criminalisation of those who advocate for sharia law to be implemented in Austria.