World News

Iranian Christians in Turkey are excluded from US resettlement programme

Many Christians from Iran, who are escaping from persecution are waiting in Turkey for resettlement. They want to go further to safe third countries but US authorities ruled that they are no longer eligible for resettlement under the refugee sponsorship programme.

Iran is now a Country of Particular Concern (CPC) according to the US. The report made by the US State Department listed Iran as CPC because of it’s severe violations of religious freedom.

It is a positive sign that Iran has again become  a CPC, at the same time the decision made by US authorities that Turkey is no longer a country from where refugees can be resettled is definitely a setback.

For the Iranian Christians currently waiting in Turkey for resettlement, this was a shocking decision. They fled their country – many cases risking their lives – because they are persecuted in Iran for their faith.

It is now an established practice that Christians fleeing from persecution and wanting to live in an environment where they can freely practice their faith are applying for international protection in Turkey and register as asylum seekers. If they get the refugee status then they apply for resettlement in a safe third country.

After the decision of the US, for many Iranian Christians the chances are significantly lower for resettlement. If they are not able to resettle and their residence permit in Turkey is terminated, they may face deportation.

Source: Asia News

Leave a reply