This is how you can help a twice-tortured gay Christian from Iran who’s facing deportation

Supporters of a gay Christian asylum seeker from Iran currently locked up in an immigration detention centre in the UK are calling on the Home Office to release him immediately.

Madhi is a gay Christian man who has twice been tortured in Iran, a country where gay sex is a crime punishable by death.

The UK government has detained him in Colnbrook Immigration Removal Centre, pending deportation to Germany on January 28.

More than 25,000 people have signed a petition, started by the reverend of Madhi’s church, calling on home secretary Priti Patel to end Madhi’s detention and halt any efforts to deport him.

“We fear that his life is at risk if he is forcibly deported,” the reverend said.

“Madhi, after having been detained and tortured in Iran twice before escaping to Europe, was then homeless and abused in Germany before making his way to the UK. Here he met his partner, Ian, and started attending our church.

“Madhi is a vulnerable adult suffering PTSD and prone to self-harm following his experiences which led to his fleeing Iran. After mistreatment whilst in detention with G4S, he had a serious self-harm episode in custody. He is still at risk.”

Last year, Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammed Javad Zarif, defended the execution of gay people in the country.

Asked by a reporter for the German newspaper Bild: “Why are homosexuals executed in Iran because of their sexual orientation?”

“Our society has moral principles. And we live according to these principles,” Zarif answered.

“I first met Madhi and his partner through the church where I am a reverend,” the petition says. “It would be a massive loss to our community if he was forcibly deported.

“Madhi has been a consistent presence at our church, taking part in leading services and enjoying playing a full part in the life of our church community. This is one of the few places where Madhi feels safe.”

The petition is here.