Mehdi Shokr Khoda, a 19-year-old asylum seeker who describes himself as gay and Christian, both punishable offenses in Iran, is fighting for his life to be believed by the Swedish government, an entity that has the power to deport him back to Iran where he could face the death penalty, according to LGBTQ Nation.
The incredulous government is putting Khoda's life in danger by potentially deporting him, despite Sweden granting asylum to LGBTQ people who are fleeing a homophobic regime.
Khoda's transgender sister applied for and was granted asylum in Sweden two years prior, but the government is not so eager to believe Mehdi as he never had a coming out story and was baptized only when he arrived in Sweden. He explains that such practices would be very dangerous in a Muslim-majority country such as Iran.
Currently, Khoda is waiting on the Swedish government's decision on whether or not to deport him. The ruling will happen in two weeks. He is living with his boyfriend, Carlo Rapisarda, who is a Swedish resident. The two plan to get married but can't do so without Khoda having a resident card, which the Swedish government will not give him.
I'm inclined to believe Khoda as I have heard some horror stories about the conditions that the treatment that LGBTQ people receive in certain countries, making them less than eager to express their sexuality. What the Swedish government doesn't understand is that everyone's coming out story is an individual experience and, as such, cannot be applied identically. I hope that Khoxa gets the treatment he deserves and doesn't get deported to a country that will not go easy on him for being gay.
h/t: LGBTQ Nation.