Asylum seeker: 'I had to prove I'm gay'

The UK Border Agency used to be able to turn away gay asylum seekers on the grounds that they could return home and behave with discretion.

But that changed in 2010, when it was ruled that a proven risk of persecution on the grounds of sexual orientation was reason to stay in Britain.

Solicitors and gay rights organisations say that asylum seekers are having to go through several applications and tribunals to prove they are gay, and the process is an increasingly humiliating and sexually explicit experience.

Nicola Stanbridge reports that while the Border Agency says cases should be handled sensitively, one instance has occurred where a homemade sex tape was considered in court.

The UK Border Agency told the BBC they have changed their guidance to ensure that they do not remove individuals who have demonstrated a proven risk of persecution on grounds of sexual orientation.

The agency said: "Our position remains clear - when someone needs our protection, they will be given it."

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4's Today programme on Wednesday 27 February 2013.

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