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LT: The Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania upheld a Russian applicant's appeal, ruling that the lower courts failed to consider the deteriorating situation for the LGBTIQ community in Russia, including legislative changes that designated the movement as an extremist terrorist organisation.

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National law only (in case there is no reference to EU law/ECHR)
Lithuania, Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania [Lietuvos vyriausiasis administracinis teismas], E.M v Migration Department of the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Lithuania, no. e A- 1361 - 552 /2024, 10 April 2024. Link redirects to the English summary in the EUAA Case Law Database.
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The applicant, EM, of Russian nationality, applied for international protection in Lithuania. The applicant stated that he participated in rallies in 2018 and 2020 and he was afraid to express her political views since there is no freedom of speech in her country of origin. The applicant is homosexual and alleges she is in danger of being persecuted by law enforcement not just for her opposing views and activities, but also for her sexual orientation.

The Migration Department rejected the applicant's application for international protection. The applicant filed an appeal with the Vilnius Administrative District Court (VAAT), alleging that the Migration Department failed to properly examine the risk of persecution. The department failed to analyse the applicants' political opinions on social media, which were critical of the government. Furthermore, the applicant claimed that the Migration Department did not examine the applicant’s individual circumstances.

The VAAT dismissed the appeal as unfounded and stated that the Migration Department conducted a thorough investigation of the facts, after reviewing the applicant’s individual circumstances, and reached a proper and reasonable conclusion. The VAAT concluded that the Migration Department's decision was legitimate and that no further review was required.

The applicant filed an appeal with the Supreme Administrative Court (LVAT), which upheld the claims. The LVAT determined that neither the Migration Department nor the VAAT paid close attention to the worsening position of the LGBTIQ community in Russia. In particular, the LVAT noted the legislative changes that passed in November 2023, and which recognised the international LGBTIQ movement as an extremist terrorist organisation and added it to the list of extremists, effectively establishing the conditions for prosecuting active community representatives.

The LVAT determined that, given the ruling regime's day-to-day repression of the community, as well as the negative public attitude, the Migration Department's individual assessment was not legitimate when it considered that applicant would not be forced into hiding owing to her sexual orientation, and she was not engaged in the LGBTIQ community.

The LVAT found that many cumulative situations may have resulted in the applicant's persecution or inhuman treatment, as well as degradation of her dignity. The LVAT concluded that VAAT had unjustifiably upheld the legitimacy and legality of the Migration Department's decision and had failed to assess all the circumstances essential to the objective examination of the applicant’s application.


Country of Decision
Court Name
LT: Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania [Lietuvos vyriausiasis administracinis teismas]
Case Number
no. e A- 1361 - 552 /2024
Date of Decision
Country of Origin
Assessment of Application
Country of Origin Information
Gender identity / Gender expression / Sexual Orientation / SOGIESC