Denmark - the Refugee Appeals Board’s decision of 22 February 2017

Country of Decision:
Country of Applicant:
Date of Decision:
22-02-2017
Court Name:
The Refugee Appeals Board
National / Other Legislative Provisions:
Denmark - The Danish Aliens Act Art. 7
(1)
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Headnote: 

The applicant, an ethnic Kurd and a Yarsan from Kanehar, Kermanshah, Iran, had performed religious activities aimed at spreading the knowledge of the faith and thereby attracted the attention of the authorities.

The majority of the Board accepted the applicants account and consequently the Board found that the applicant risked persecution because of his Yarsan religious activities and granted refugee status under the Danish Aliens Act Art. 7 (1).

Facts: 

The applicant, born in 1985, is an ethnic Kurd and a Yarsan from Kanehar, Kermanshah, Iran. He entered Denmark in October 2015 and applied for refugee status. He stated that he feared if he returned to Iran he would be executed by the Iranian authorities because he is not a Muslim but a Yarsan. He had performed religious activities aimed at spreading the knowledge of the faith and thereby attracted the attention of the authorities.

In support of his application the applicant has explained that he had participated in five meetings during the last 18 months before his departure from Iran. In the meetings, he had presented Yarsan leaders, including his father’s brother to the participants which included Muslim students. Material about Yarsan such as cd’s and books were distributed. In September 2015, the applicant’s home was searched by men in plain clothes. The applicant was not at home but his mother afterwards told him that the men in plain clothes mentioned the applicant by name and said they would find her son and punish him.

The Danish Immigration Service rejected the asylum application in September 2016.

Decision & Reasoning: 

The applicant was granted refugee status under the Danish Aliens Act Art. 7 (1).

The account of the applicant has been established by the majority of the Refugee Appeals Board.

The majority of the Board accepted that the applicant, as a consequence of his religious activities regarding the Yarsan faith, has attracted the attention of the authorities. The majority of the Board therefore found that it cannot be dismissed with the necessary certainty that the applicant, in the case of returning to Iran, will be exposed to persecution based on these facts. Consequently, the Board granted the applicant refugee status under the Danish Aliens Act Art. 7 (1).

Outcome: 

The applicant was granted refugee status under the Danish Aliens Act Art. 7 (1).

Observations/Comments: 

The decision was a majority decision and the dissent is not available.