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

Input Provided By
Original Documents
Relevant Legislative Provisions
UN International Covenants / UN Conventions
France, National Court of Asylum [Cour Nationale du Droit d'Asile (CNDA)], M. N. v French Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons (OFPRA), No 22027411 C, 12 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, a Burundian national, submitted an application for international protection in France. The OFPRA rejected this application on 31 March 2022. The applicant appealed against this decision on 7 June 2022. He contested the OFPRA’s decision and argued that, due to his sexual orientation, he would be at serious risk of persecution by his family and community upon return to Burundi.

Based on country-of-origin information, the court recalled that homosexuality was criminalised in Burundi and could be punished by fines and/or detention for up to 2 years. Furthermore, the court noted that homosexual persons were facing violence, harassment and intimidation by society, incited or encouraged by the national authorities. Country-of-origin information also demonstrated LGBTIQ+ persons in Burundi were facing social discrimination, notably regarding education, employment and access to health care. The court added that 24 LGBTIQ+ activists raising awareness on HIV/AIDS were arrested for “homosexual practices or incitement to homosexual practices”. 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 protection to the applicant.

Country of Decision
Court Name
FR: National Court of Asylum [Cour Nationale du Droit d'Asile (CNDA)]
Case Number
No 22027411 C
Date of Decision
Country of Origin
Country of Origin Information
Gender identity / Gender expression / Sexual Orientation / SOGIESC
Membership of a particular social group
Refugee Protection
Vulnerable Group
Other Source/Information
CNDA Press release