Dutch parliament demands better screening of LGBTI asylum seekers

Rainbow flag
Rainbow flag. chtfj21 / Wikimedia Commons

The Tweede Kamer wants better and more careful screening for LGBTI asylum seekers. Currently the immigration and naturalization service IND rejects too many LGBTI people, while they are actually eligible for asylum, according to coalition parties D66, VVD, CDA and ChristenUnie, NOS reports.

"These are difficult issues", D66 parliamentarian Maarten Groothuizen said to the broadcaster. "You do not want to give people who abuse it a residency permit, but you also want to prevent someone who is homosexual and not safe from being sent back to his home country. So the process must be more careful." 

He thinks that the problem of the IND process lies in the field of awareness. "For example, people sometimes even get asked on which day someone became homosexual. That does not happen from one day to the next. Especially in a country where LGBTI people are not accepted."

Asylum seekers who arrive in the Netherlands go to a center in Ter Apel to hear whether they may stay in the Netherlands or not. For a war refugee from Syria, the decision is simpler than for a gay person from Uganda, for example. Because the gay person faces the chance that the IND won't believe his story. 

The Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, will discuss this issue on Wednesday during the debate on the budget for the Ministry of Justice and Security. According to NOS, the coalition parties also want better screening for converted Christians seeking asylum in the Netherlands. 

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