Stop the removal of Lydia Nabukenya, a lesbian woman, back to Uganda
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This is a petition to ask the Home office to allow Lydia Nabukenya [HO Ref: N3008521] to stay in U.K and not be sent back to Uganda where she faces persecution and the risk of serious violence.
Lydia is a Ugandan lesbian who fled to the UK in 2015. She had to flee her home country as in Uganda her life was in danger due to her sexuality.
Several years ago Lydia was forced into marriage by pressure from her aunt who had realised that she was a lesbian. In 2009 her husband found Lydia and her girlfriend kissing. On discovering that Lydia is a lesbian her husband beat her and threatened to report her to the police (as homosexuality is illegal in Uganda for both men and women).
Lydia fled the marriage and she and her girlfriend tried to live as discreetly as possible. They could not live together as this would attract attention and they would be in danger from the local community. Despite their discretion, in 2014 they were discovered together at her girlfriend's house and were physically attacked by a group of local people.
Lydia was able to escape to the UK in 2015, her girlfriend having fled here the year before. They are both currently claiming asylum on the grounds of sexuality. They have been housed by the Home Office in different geographical areas.
Lydia is in Manchester and has been a member of the Manchester based Lesbian Immigration Support Group since early 2016.
Lydia's asylum application was rejected in January 2016. She has subsequently prepared a fresh claim which she tried to submit to the Home Office on 14th February this year. Lydia was instructed to return to submit the fresh claim on 23rd March. However, Lydia was detained at Dallas Court Reporting Centre when she went to sign there on 10 March.
Lydia had no explanation of why she had been detained and was due to be deported before she was able to attend the formal fresh claim submission meeting on 23rd March which the Home Office itself actually arranged. As a result, Lydia was being denied the opportunity to submit important evidence which was not considered at her previous hearing.
Lydia was moved to Yarlswood at 3am on Sunday 12th March, but luckily released the same day. Lydia would like to that everybody who did everything from signing this petition, forwarding it on or sent her personal messages over this difficult time. But the battle continues and we ask you to continue with your support please until there Lydia and her girlfriend Margaret are completely safe with no risk of being removed from the country.
The UK should not be sending a lesbian woman back to Uganda, a country that persecutes LGBT people. Unless we do all we can to help, Lydia will be sent back to a dangerous situation. Your support may well help Lydia to live a free life as a lesbian woman without fear of persecution or even death.
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