Austria

Read about LGBTI asylum in Austria here...

In Austria, under the provisions of the 2005 law on asylum LGBT persons are considered to be members of a particular social group. In 2006 the Federal Independent Asylum Tribunal granted asylum to a transsexual woman from Iran .

Austria uses a safe third country policy. If an applicant passed through a country that is considered safe, even if only in transit, Austria will return the applicant to that safe country of transit. According to the U.S. State Department , Austria’s safe country of transit list includes the entire EU and all parties to the refugee convention.

Unmarried partners (both same-sex and opposite-sex) do not benefit from family reunification under Austrian law . It is unclear whether there could be changes following the adoption of a same-sex partnership law in Austria in 2009.

Find more LGBTI country information on Austria in our Country-by-Country section

***

General on asylum in an EU member state

Under Council Directive 2004/83/EC, Apr. 29, 2004 (the “Qualification Directive” or “Directive”) sexual orientation may, depending on the circumstances of the country of origin, provide the basis for a claim for asylum based on persecution based on membership of a particular social group. As of 2008, no Member “ha[d] explicitly refused to consider sexual orientation as a source of persecution for the purposes of granting refugee status.” As of 2009, there was data available to confirm (page 84) that “asylum ha[d] been granted to LGBT persons in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Czech Republic and the United Kingdom. The asylum policies of the countries discussed here (page 96) must also all conform to the 1951 Convention on the Status of Refugees and its 1967 Optional Protocol, as well as the European Charter of Human Rights. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has made it clear that LGBT individuals are members of a particular social group. The Council of Europe concurs in this interpretation. According to the Treaty on the functioning of the European Union’s Protocol on asylum for nationals of Member States of the European Union, Member States of the EU shall be regarded as constituting safe countries of origin in respect of each other for all legal and practical purposes in relation to asylum matters . Accordingly, any application for asylum made by a national of a Member State are normally not taken into consideration.

Share |

Stay informed
For media