Human rights court condemns Switzerland over gay man’s deportation to Gambia
The European Court of Human Rights said Tuesday that Switzerland had failed to sufficiently assess the risks
for a gay man who was ordered to return to The Gambia after he requested asylum and residency were
The man, who has been living in Switzerland since 2008, argued that he would face ill-treatment or worse
because homosexuality remains a crime in the West African state.
The authorities, however, based their deportation order on reports that Gambian officials were not applying
the anti-homosexuality laws in practice.
They also determined that the man was not at risk of danger from his own family, despite his claims to the
But the European court said Switzerland should have taken into account that “ill-treatment might also emanate
from non-state actors other than family members,” noting anti-gay sentiments stirred up by the government
The European court said carrying out the deportation without a new assessment of the risks in The Gambia
would be a violation of the European Convention on Human Rights. It ordered Switzerland to pay the man
14,500 euros to cover legal fees.