Australia: Gay asylum seekers relocated to Papua New Guinea, where it is illegal to be gay

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Gay asylum seekers who had originally tried to seek refuge in Australia, may be relocated to Papua New Guinea, where homosexuality is illegal.

Several Iranian gay people are held by Australian immigration officials on the island of Manus in Papua New Guinea.

The Guardian reports that they may be permanently resettled there, despite homosexuality being punishably by 14 years in prison in the country.

Letters in Farsi by the four gay men say they sought refuge in Australia after fearing persecution in Iran.

“I am hoping that I will not be sent to PNG prison because I don’t want to be killed by indigenous people living in Papua New Guinea like my fellow countryman did in February,” reads one letter, according to the Guardian.

According to a report by Amnesty International froM December, says the detainees were told anyone found “engaging in homosexual acts” will be reported to Papua New Guinea authorities.

Amnesty Australia’s refugee-camp coordinator said the organisation had raised concerns on the issue of gay men at the Manus detention centre, but to no avail.

Officials have denied that Australian staff would report gay detainees to Papua New Guinea authorities.