A Pakistani man has been denied refugee status in Australia after officials doubted his sexual orientation.
Ali Humayun first arrived in Australia back in 2000 to study information technology. As cash ran short, Humayun took a job – a violation of his bridging visa. When authorities caught him, they stuck him in the Villawood detention center, where he started dating a man. Pleading his case, Humayun – who converted to Christianity in 2001 and also identifies as gay – told Australian officials that he faces severe consequences if deported back to Pakistan:
I’m worried for my life if I am deported home. The men in my family, they are really fundamentalist types. Muslims. My lifestyle is totally in contrast to what they believe.
Tribunal official Giles Short, however, found Humayun’s “lifestyle” to be fraudulent:
The applicant was not in fact bisexual â€¦ [his relationship] was simply the product of the situation where only partners of the same sex were available and said nothing about his sexual orientation.
Short also dismissed Humayun’s plans to marry his lover, who has just been granted asylum. Speaking to the court, Short called Humayan’s wedding bell dreams “a contrived attempt to make their relationship appear more serious”. With no other option, Humayun’s now writing to Australia’s Minister of Immigration for an appeal. Good luck on that one.