No5 Chambers

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ME v Sweden — Strasbourg rules no violation of article 3 for Sweden to temporarily expel a gay man to Libya

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), in a judgment handed down, has declared admissible on article 3 grounds an application from a gay man regarding his expulsion from Sweden to Libya. They declared inadmissible an article 8 ECHR claim. However, as the court could not be certain that the evidence showed article 3 ill treatment of gay men in Libya, and importantly the court found that any expulsion would be temporary for a period of approximately four months in order for him to make his family reunion application, based on his same-sex marriage to a Swedish national, then any suppression of his sexual identity will not be permanent, the court by a six-to-one majority decision held that there was no violation of article 3. The court declared the article 8 ECHR claim inadmissible. Maltese Judge De Gaetano in his separate opinion castigates his fellow majority judges for proceeding on the basis that it is accepted that ME is gay and in a genuine relationship with a Swedish man. This judge also sees no reason for the Strasbourg court to refer to the recent Luxembourg judgment in X, Y and Z relating to criminalisation and persecution…

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