Asylum panel in Denmark apparently reopens trans woman seeking refugee case

Fernanda Milan (Photo: lgbt.dk)

THE GUERRILLA ANGEL REPORT — There is no English news account of the apparent decision by the Danish asylum panel and I’m working from Danish-to-English translations. Apparently there is good news. First the back story from my earlier report:

Fernanda Milan left Guatemala after a police officer held a gun to her head threatening to kill her if she didn’t stop her advocacy work. While it is not clear how she ended up in Denmark, but the organization LGBT-Denmark is providing the Danish asylum panel with evidence of the circumstances in Guatemala. Milan says she fears torture and death if she was to return.

Full story here: After death threats from police in home country, trans woman seeks refugee in Denmark « The Guerrilla Angel Report by Lexie Cannes.

Since that story, I was told that a decision was already made to send Milan back home. However, trans and LGBT advocates were working to get the Danish asylum panel to reopen the decision. Apparently this effort has succeeded.

Here’s a summary of the English translation of an article posted Sept. 23, 2012 on LGBT Demark’s website: http://www.lgbt.dk/111/?tx_ttnews[year]=2012&tx_ttnews[month]=09&tx_ttnews[tt_news]=3487&cHash=4d54e9bbb6,

[Condensed summary:] Fernandas asylum procedure reopened
Important decision from the Refugee Board’s page.
. . .
The Refugee Board has received several inquiries in the matter, inter alia from ILGA Europe, and they have now chosen to reopen it.

“It is a happy decision, and the only right decision,” says Søren Laursen [LGBT advocate]. “It is my view that Fernanda throughout the case has been improperly treated.

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I’ve posted the entire English translation in the comments section. I’m not sure what happens next. If I’ve misread the translation, please feel free to comment in this blog’s comment section so I can make corrections.

Fernanda Milan (Photo: lgbt.dk)

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Categories: Law Enforcement, Police, Transgender, Transsexual, Trans

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13 replies

  1. Here’s the English translation of an article posted Sept. 23, 2012 on LGBT Demark’s website: http://www.lgbt.dk/111/?tx_ttnews%5Byear%5D=2012&tx_ttnews%5Bmonth%5D=09&tx_ttnews%5Btt_news%5D=3487&cHash=4d54e9bbb6,

    Fernandas asylum procedure reopened
    Important decision from the Refugee Board’s page.

    In January of this year was Fernanda Miláns asylum procedure decided in the Refugee Board. Prior was passed a long process which had led to the refusal of the alien administration, a refusal which automatically aappeal Refugee Board.

    LGBT Denmark has followed the matter very long and also made speeches in the case. “I was more than surprised by the refusal of the Board,” explains Søren Laursen, asylum Advisor in LGBT Denmark. “I think the matter were well-exposed and that it is obvious that Fernanda is in danger and need international protection. I think the Board has rejected it with a very ‘ technical ‘ explanation, and that asylum overlooks or override some essential basic conditions. ”

    The Refugee Board is the body in Denmark, which shall take the final decision in asylum cases, and decisions therefore cannot be submitted. The only way to move forward is to get the case reopened, but it is in General impossible. It requires that the obtained essential substantial new information in the case.

    “It is a problem,” explains Søren Laursen, “because I think the Basic, we made a wrong decision in the Board, and that the proceedings on the information available, should have given asylum. But when it is rejected, we have new information, and new information will typically be more of the same and therefore not substantial new-it is Kafkaesque. We have therefore, together with Fernanda since January sought to obtain information from sources in Guatemala, which has been able to deepen the specific risk, as Fernanda is exposed. Only recently has there been a response. ”

    In the last month has been the subject of a public case Fernandas exposure in the press, as there have been campaigns and made demonstrations.

    Several of the country’s ablest asylum experts have reviewed the matter with a view to assessing the possibility of a resumption, but these have been skeptical. “If we know a little to the area, so we know that resumption generally is almost impossible, and that the rejections on genoptagelser usually justified intermittently. We must therefore have the right sound card in your hand to get nowhere, “elaborates Søren Laursen. “I understand fully the scepticism that is expressed and the reasons for it. I know also excellent system, and we must not put an asylum seeker eyewash if it is futile anyway-it would be bad advice. However, as I said, it is my opinion that Fernanda truly need protection, and that is why I have insisted that there should be a trial. Therefore I submitted, by agreement with the lawyer and on behalf of Fernanda, a request for resumption. ”

    The Refugee Board has received several inquiries in the matter, inter alia from ILGA Europe, and they have now chosen to reopen it.

    “It is a happy decision, and the only right decision,” says Søren Laursen. “It is my view that Fernanda throughout the case has been improperly treated. In my eyes, it looks as though we do not understand trans persons ‘ conditions around the world and even here at home. It is a fundamental problem. I was the Danish country expert in a major, Pan-European research project on LGBT asylum seekers in Europe, and even in this forum, there was very little focus on tran estimated applicants. This means it is persecution patterns and reasons for asylum-GUIDED BOMB-persons who draw the image, but there is a fundamental difference on-GUIDED BOMB-cases on the one hand, and T-cases on the other side. ”

    “I hope a renewed Board treatment of Fernandas case will lead to an understanding of the risks she faces and the need for protection. If that happens, it will be a success for the activists who have made great efforts to trans people as asylum seekers in bright breeding, “ends Søren laursen.
    ___________

    LGBT Denmark Adviser LGBT asylum seekers in Denmark, and works nationally and internationally with political subject matter.
    Søren Laursen is juridico-political spokesperson and Adviser for asylum in Denmark and former member of the LGBT Refugee Board.

    Søren Laursen: “Persecution and Neglect”, article about trans people as asylum seekers. From the closing Conference of the Pan-European research project on LGBT asylum, “Fleeing homophobia”

  2. Copenhagen Post are covering the story, in English, as updates happen. For example: http://cphpost.dk/news/international/trans-woman-activist-gets-last-minute-reprieve

  3. Great News!! My hopes and prayers are with Ferdinanda that she is granted permanent asylum.

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