Iranian Queer Organization – IRQO Report on Iranian LGBT Refugees Turkey – 2013

Transit Countries
Violation of LGBT rights is not limited to those LGBT individuals living in Iran. IRQO regularly receives significant number of sexual harassment reports from its clients in transit and host countries due to several reasons such as lack of legal status and harsh homophobic environment. While IRQO is heavily involved with LGBT refugees in Turkey, harassment experienced by LGBT refugees in the East Asian countries goes unnoticed by organizations and authorities. One Iranian gay refugee in Malaysia reported to IRQO that he has been forced to give sexual favors in return of shelter and food even after he was granted refugee status and while he was waiting for his resettlement interview. In Turkey, rooms and apartments are hardly rented to the Iranian LGBT refugees. LGBT refugees have to hide their sexual
orientation or the landlord would evacuate them immediately causing LGBT individuals lose money and shelter. Refugees do not have work permits in their transit countries. Therefore, they have to work under harsh circumstances in order to pay for their expenses, and there is a chance the employer do not pay wages and dismisses them without pay.