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African Human Rights Coalition Statement on Biden Admin’s New Announcement on Legal Migration

African Human Rights Coalition welcomes the Biden Administration’s news on what is termed the “expanded and improved” legal migration pathways for many. However on some level it is a small and limiting step. It does little to mitigate and may even impede when it comes to the crisis facing Africa’s LGBTQI+ community, who are fleeing life in prison and death sentences at the hands of their own governments, with criminalizing laws that license extreme persecution and violence at every level of their lives, to include at the hands family and all community. Many endure onerous journeys, traversing continents, to reach the U.S. Southern border, due to desperation and zero feasible pathways to protection and equality.


We take this opportunity to note that part of what drives LGBTQI+ Africans to the Southern Border is that fact that the Biden administration has still much to do to repair the resettlement program that was decimated by the previous administration, and so many LGBTQI+ refugees languish in unsafe homophobic refugee camps, without durable solutions, food shortages, often under the very attack they sought to escape. LGBTQI+ refugees are languishing unattended for years with no guarantee to resettlement.


We call on the Biden-Harris Administration to desist from the built-in deterrence aspects of their post title 42 plan, which in essence could shut down or ensure a more challenging path for the most marginalized such as LGBTQI+ people. We call on the Biden Administration to create special paths for Africa’s LGBTQI+ community due to the unique circumstances they face – where migration routes, for those seeking protection and asylum, are almost non-existent or uniquely dangerous, given that often second and transit countries are hostile and criminalizing of SOGIESC.


We plead for legal sensible paths for LGBTQI+ people currently hunted by their own Governments with the enhanced anti-homosexuality legislation either enacted or sought in Uganda, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Malawi, etc.

Melanie Nathan, nathan@AfricanHRC.org Executive Director, African Human Rights Coalitio Country Conditions Expert Witness for LGBTQI+ people seeking asylum from 20 African Countries


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