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Gay asylum seeker denied visa for not knowing what the Pride flag colors meant

Written by gaytourism

Navid was seeking asylum in Austria. | Photo: Twitter/Queer Base

A gay Iranian trying seek asylum in Austria had his application rejected because he couldn’t explain what the six colors on the Pride flag meant.

Navid escaped Iran in 2014 because he feared for his life based on his sexuality. He arrived in Vienna where he has since lived and established a life in Austria.

But in June his application for asylum based on sexuality was rejected by the Federal Office for Aliens and Asylum (BFA) . The BFA didn’t believe his reason for seeking asylum because he could not explain what each color on the Pride flag meant.

The six-colored Pride flag is a global symbol of the LGBTI community and is often displayed at Pride events and protests.

Austrian LGBTI group ‘Queer Base’ supported Navid throughout the asylum process. Established in 2015 and based in Vienna, Queer Base works for refugees who have been forced to flee their home countries as a result of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Queer Base argued that the BFA didn’t appropriately investigate Navid’s application. For example the BFA didn’t even interview Navid’s partner to confirm he is gay.

Some good news

Austrians pleaded for Navid after his application rejection became public knowledge.

But just weeks after the BFA denied Navid asylum, the Federal Administrative Court (BvWG) ruled in his favor.

On Monday (13 August) Navid was finally granted asylum inA ustria.

‘We are very happy and so is Navid and we thank all his supporters!’ Queer Base wrote on Twitter.

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What do the colors mean?

San Francisco artist, Gilbert Baker, designed the world famous Pride flag in 1978 to use in the gay rights movement.

While the flag is meant to represent the diversity of the LGBTI community, each of the six colours also has a special meaning. They are:

  • Red = life
  • Orange = healing
  • Yellow = sunlight
  • Green = nature
  • Blue = harmony/peace
  • Violet = spirit

More recently, people have started adding black and brown stripes to the flag to represent people of color.

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