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For an effective recognition of the specific grounds for asylum for women, girls and LGBTIQA+ people
by Feministasylum
4 March 2022

On the occasion of 8 March 2022, International Day of Struggle for Women’s Rights, more than 100 personalities from the political, associative, artistic and sports worlds - including Silvia Federici (Italy), Sofia Bekatorou, double Olympic medallist (gold and bronze) and initiator of the #Metoo movement in Greece, Eric Toussaint (Belgium), Ariane Ascaride and Robert Guédiguian (France), Madeleine Mawamba and Adam Broomberg (Germany), Pinar Selek (Turkey), José Maria Gonzales/Kichi (Spanish State), Ada Sousa (Portugal), Zbigniew Kowalevsky (Poland), Joan Collins (Ireland), Rina Nissim and Jean Ziegler (Switzerland) - launch an appeal in support of the European feminist petition for effective recognition of asylum grounds specific to women, girls and LGBTIQA+ people.

Launched on 11 November 2021 by the Feminist Asylum Coalition, this petition is now supported by more than 250 organisations, including the World March of Women, the International Federation for Human Rights, Médecins du Monde, the European Association of Lawyers for Democracy and World Human Rights, the CADTM, the Committee for the European Civic Forum and the Party of the European Left. The signatories of the appeal, published on 8 March 2022, denounce «the tragedies taking place in the Mediterranean and on our borders. These tragedies reveal the flaws in asylum policy and cannot go unanswered.» They call on the political authorities to respect the international commitments they have ratified to protect people.

In addition to people’s reasons for fleeing their country and seeking refuge in Europe to rebuild their lives, women have reasons that are a pure product of patriarchy, such as forced marriage, human trafficking, genital mutilation or death threats against people who deviate from the heterosexual norm. On the road to exile, new violence overwhelms them: imprisonment, kidnapping, repeated rape, abduction of children. Arriving in Europe - for those who have not died on the way - instead of a welcome that allows them to rebuild their lives and heal themselves, new obstacles await them. Far from being granted asylum and all the protection and care measures they need, they are exposed to further violence, living conditions and inhuman treatment that do not take into account the obligations set out in articles 59-61 of the Istanbul Convention.

Despite the commitments made by the vast majority of European countries and by the governments of the Schengen area through several international conventions – including the Istanbul Convention – none of the countries in Europe is currently giving itself the means to truly protect vulnerable people by granting them the right to asylum when they have experienced gender-based violence. This must change!



The tragedies that are taking place in the Mediterranean and on our borders cannot remain unanswered. These dramas reveal the flaws in European asylum policy.

In their flight path, women, girls and lgbtiqa+ people are particularly exposed. In order to ensure that sexual and gender-based violence suffered in countries of origin or on the routes of exile is taken into account in asylum policy, we are signatories to the request launched by the Feminist Asylum coalition.

We call on the European political authorities and the governments of the Schengen area to build a Europe without repression, without deaths, without violence. All signed conventions, including the Istanbul Convention, must be applied to migrant women in accordance with the commitments made! We invite civil society to enlarge the circle of signatories of the petition: Quickly!


Signatories below: