Last Updated: Monday, 11 December 2017, 15:40 GMT

Afghan atheist wins asylum in Britain on religious grounds

Publisher Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
Publication Date 14 January 2014
Cite as Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Afghan atheist wins asylum in Britain on religious grounds, 14 January 2014, available at: [accessed 12 December 2017]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

January 14, 2014

An Afghan citizen has been granted asylum in Britain on religious grounds because he is an atheist.

Lawyers for the man, who has not been identified, said on January 14 that he came to Britain in 2007, aged 16, and gradually lost his Muslim faith.

They argued that he could face a death sentence as an apostate if he was returned to Afghanistan.

It is said to be the first time a person has been granted asylum in Britain on the basis of their atheism.

The legal team submitted the case to the Home Office under the 1951 UN Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, which aims to protect people from persecution on the grounds of race, religion, nationality, political opinions, or membership in a particular social group.

Based on reporting by AP and dpa

Link to original story on RFE/RL website

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