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FR: The National Court of Asylum held that homosexual persons constitute a particular social group in Iran.

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Original Documents
Relevant Legislative Provisions
UN International Covenants / UN Conventions
France, National Court of Asylum [Cour Nationale du Droit d'Asile (CNDA)], M.A. v French Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons (OFPRA), No 22058695 C+, 26 July 2023. Link redirects to the English summary in the EUAA Case Law Database.
Permanent link to the case
Case history
Other information

The applicant, an Iranian national, submitted an application for international protection in France. The OFPRA rejected this application on 15 September 2022. The applicant appealed against this decision on 12 December 2022. He contested the OFPRA’s decision to treat his application through the accelerated procedure and argued that, due to his sexual orientation, he would be at serious risk of persecution by the national authorities and his father upon return to Iran.

Based on country-of-origin information, the court recalled that homosexuality is criminalised in Iran and can be punished by flogging, detention and the death penalty. Furthermore, the court noted that the concerned laws are being enforced, with executions performed as recently as July 2022. The court added that such persecution is not carried out solely by the national authorities but also by individuals, through honour crimes, and health institutions e.g. with gender reassignment surgery and conversion therapy. Therefore, the court concluded that homosexual persons should be regarded as members of a particular social group in the sense of Article 1(A)(2) of the 1951 Refugee Convention.

The court noted that the applicant’s sexual orientation had been established due to the consistent information and corroborating evidence he provided throughout the proceedings. Thus, the court stated that the applicant qualifies as a member of a particular social group in the sense of Article 1(A)(2) of the 1951 Refugee Convention.

The court annulled the OFPRA’s decision and granted refugee status to the applicant.

Country of Decision
Court Name
FR: National Court of Asylum [Cour Nationale du Droit d'Asile (CNDA)]
Case Number
No 22058695 C+
Date of Decision
Country of Origin
Country of Origin Information
Gender identity / Gender expression / Sexual Orientation / SOGIESC
Membership of a particular social group